The 2021 Major League Baseball season is now over two weeks into the year and I thought it would be fun to see how some former members of the 2020 Blue Jays are doing with their new teams.
After playing one year in Toronto, Shaw returned to the Milwaukee Brewers where he had spent the three seasons prior to the Blue Jays. Despite struggling at the plate in Spring Training, Shaw earned a spot on the Brewers roster starting 10 of the first 12 games at third base and has yet to make an error. To start the season, Shaw has gone 11 for 37 (.297) with three home runs and 12 RBI.
Shoemaker landed himself a contract in Minnesota on a modest one-year $2 million contract, which I thought the Blue Jays could have beat. He looked very impressive in his Twins debut, throwing six innings allowing just one run with no walks and five strikeouts. He struggled a bit in his second game, collecting a no-decision, and currently holds a record of 1-0 with a 4.09 ERA.
It appeared from Twitter that Taijuan Walker was the free-agent pitcher a lot of Blue Jays fans wanted the club to bring back, but in the end, he signed a two-year deal with an option for a third year with the New York Mets. Walker has pitched well in both games but collected no-decisions in both starts. In his most recent start this past week Walker pitched 4.1 innings, allowing just one run while striking out eight. He currently is the owner of a 2.61 ERA.
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One of the most reliable arms in the Toronto bullpen in 2020 was Anthony Bass, despite having a bit of a rough September. Bass struggled out of the gate with the Miami Marlins after being named as the closer. Bass blew his first two save opportunities allowing a total of six earned runs over 1.1 innings pitched. Since that appearance, he was removed as the closer and went back into his more comfortable late reliever role. Since being moved from the closer role, Bass has pitched three straight outings without allowing a run. He currently has an 0-2 record with a 10.80 ERA.
The Blue Jays acquired Villar at the trade deadline in 2020 and he was a bust as he only collected 13 hits in 69 at-bats (.188). This season he signed on with the New York Mets in a backup role. Villar has started just four games but has been used as a pinch hitter. He has collected five hits in 19 at-bats (.263) without recording a walk and has three extra-base hits with eight strikeouts.
Alford was once one of the Blue Jays top prospects but found himself continually being passed in the depth chart and was put on waivers last August to which the Pittsburgh Pirates claimed him. Alford is running out of chances with the Pirates, as he is currently the fourth outfielder on their roster and has struggled mightily at the plate. Alford has just one hit in 20 at-bats (.050) while striking out 15 times.
Former 2020 Blue Jays not playing on any active MLB Rosters: Brandon Drury (NYM – Minors), Derek Fisher (MIL – IL), Wilmer Font (Unsigned), Shun Yamaguchi (SF – Minors), Sean Reid-Foley (NYM – 40-man), Sam Gaviglio (TEX – Minors), Hector Perez (CIN – 40-man) and Brian Moran (TB – Minors)
Which one of these players do you wish were still wearing a Blue Jays uniform this year?