While it is too early to determine the Blue Jays roster situation before free agency begins, there are a few names who will be heading for the open market and most likely not returning. Robbie Ray, Steven Matz, and Marcus Semien are eligible bachelors this winter alongside Corey Dickerson, Kirby Yates, David Phelps, Jarrod Dyson, and Joakim Soria, opening up some spots on the 40-man with the front office already designating relief pitcher Jacob Barnes for assignment earlier this week.
Considering it is still up in the air as to whether the club can or wants to retain any of the free agents besides the main three, the Blue Jays will also need to consider potential prospects who may be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft. They will need to be added to the 40-man roster in order to be protected from the draft but each player who takes up a spot is potentially taking away the opportunity for a free agent to join the organization. While this isn’t a concern right now, as the offseason progresses towards Spring Training, the roster will get a bit tighter and some players may be cut from the 40-man roster before spring rolls around.
That doesn’t mean any player cut from the roster won’t be in the organization anymore, as they could pass through waivers or not be traded/released, heading down to the minors just like Rafael Dolis did towards the end of last season. It just means their path back to the majors is a bit more complicated, although not entirely impossible just like how Reese McGuire found his way back on the roster when Alejandro Kirk and Danny Jansen were on the injured list.
With an exciting few months on the horizon, here are three players who may not be on the 40-man roster when Spring Training rolls around next season.