Ranking the top 10 infielders for the Toronto Blue Jays as they enter their 46th year of existence sounds pretty easy but it was actually a lot harder than I thought it would be.
Some of the best players in Blue Jays history have been pitchers like Roy Halladay and Dave Stieb, however, they’re definitely some great offensive players in the club’s history including some who played the infield.
Who are the 10 greatest Blue Jays infielders in franchise history?
10. Aaron Hill
Aaron Hill had a strange tenure in Toronto. He was a first-round pick, taken 13th overall in the 2003 MLB Draft. Hill at one point was a pretty highly touted prospect and ended up getting called up in 2005. When he first burst onto the scene he slashed .274/.342/.385 with three home runs and 40 RBI in 105 games.
That offseason, the Jays traded Orlando Hudson which opened up a full-time spot for Hill to step in.
The following three seasons he slashed .287/.338/.415 with 25 home runs and 148 RBI. 17 of those home runs came in the 2007 season. He had turned into a solid second baseman.
During that stretch, he was one of the best defensive players in the game. In 2006 and 2007 he put up 26 and 22 DRS respectively according to Fangraphs which led the league according to Fielding Bible amongst second basemen.
In 2009 Hill would take a massive leap. He slashed .286/.330/.499 with 36 home runs and 108 RBI. He made his first and only All-Star team, finished 12th in the MVP balloting, and won the AL Silver Slugger Award.
After the 2009 season, his defense took a steep decline as his DRS had him ranked towards the bottom half of second basemen.
He followed that up with a 26 home run season in 2010 but posted an OPS over 150 points lower at .665. Hill struggled in the first half of the 2011 campaign and was traded to the Diamondbacks along with John McDonald in exchange for Kelly Johnson.
Hill had a very short peak in Toronto but he did post one of the better seasons for a second baseman in franchise history.
He’s in the top 20 in Blue Jays history in just about every important offensive statistic and overall had a solid 6.5-year career in Toronto even if he didn’t quite meet the lofty expectations.