What I think we can glean from their recent development
So far I’ve taken you through the two more extreme scenarios, and now I’d like to make some predictions for the rest of the offseason. I’ll admit that I’m a lot more optimistic about how aggressive the Jays will be after Passan broke the news about their involvement with Corey Seager, and that also makes me more excited for what’s to come.
Having said that, I am not of the belief that they’ll be seriously players in the Carlos Correa sweepstakes. There’s an argument that he’s an even better player than Seager, but he’s also going to command just as much or possibly even more when he signs his next deal. For all reasons I shared before about the “downside”, I have a hard time seeing the Jays apply the same thinking to both players.
That said, I would not be shocked at all if they checked in with Trevor Story’s camp, especially if they believe they can sign him to five or six year contract, or even something shorter. The hype behind Story isn’t near as high as it is for Correa or Seager, but he’s been a premium performer for the Colorado Rockies for a long time, and should still have a solid market for his services. I don’t think the Jays will go overboard to bring him in, but I wouldn’t be shocked if they kept a close eye on his market.
I’ll say the same for a player like Kris Bryant, who is probably a more feasible candidate to join the Jays. He’s been more of an outfielder recently, but he has a long resume as a third baseman and could certainly fill that current hole in the Blue Jays’ infield. With his ability to play the outfield as well, he could always transition to a corner spot once some of the other Blue Jays top infield prospects graduate to the big leagues.
Speaking of those top prospects, I still think the Jays could be serious players in the trade market, but that’s now become a lot more difficult path to pursue. I say that because we don’t know when the lockout will end, and if things remain stalled into the spring then it’s possible there will be a very limited window for teams to finish their roster building before the regular season gets underway. The Jays can’t negotiate with free agents during the lockout, but they can’t make trades either, and the latter generally takes more time to come together.
The truly encouraging part is that it looks like the Blue Jays days of being reluctant spenders are clearly in the rearview mirror. They’ve spent big the last three offseasons in a row, and it’s entirely possible that they’re not done adding to the payroll for 2022 and beyond. It remains to be seen how they’ll finish off their roster build, but I’m very excited to see what Ross Atkins and company can do, and I think you should be too.