Toronto Blue Jays News

Trading for Ketel Marte makes a lot of sense for the Toronto Blue Jays

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 29: Ketel Marte #4 of the Arizona Diamondbacks bats against the San Francisco Giants in the top of the third inning at Oracle Park on September 29, 2021 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 29: Ketel Marte #4 of the Arizona Diamondbacks bats against the San Francisco Giants in the top of the third inning at Oracle Park on September 29, 2021 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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Prior to the MLB lockout, the Toronto Blue Jays made a couple of strong signings, bringing in reliever Yimi Garcia while also inking starter Kevin Gausman to a five-year contract. The front office also took care of one internal player, extending right-hander Jose Berrios to a seven-year deal with an opt-out after the fifth season. Since then, it has only been minor league deals and international free agency given the current state of affairs for Major League Baseball.

We also learned that at the 2021 trade deadline, the Blue Jays tried to make a splashy move in acquiring Jose Ramirez from the now Cleveland Guardians, however, the trade never materialized. It’s no question Ramirez would be an excellent addition to the Jays roster but there is another trade candidate out there who checks off quite a few boxes for what the Blue Jays may be looking for and has an extra year of contract control.

A product of the Dominican Republic, Ketel Marte is one player who could be an incredible asset for the Toronto Blue Jays roster. Having spent the past five seasons in the desert with the Arizona Diamondbacks, Marte has accumulated a pretty impressive .295/.358/.495 slash line with 67 home runs and a .853 OPS through 505 games. Marte also possesses a solid set of wheels, leading the league in triples (12) back in 2018 and has one All-Star appearance under his belt while finishing fourth in MVP voting in 2019.

Defensively, Marte splits his time between centre field and up the middle, with the switch-hitter spending a majority of the time in the outfield as of late but boasts more reps at shortstop and second base from earlier in his career. Marte has posted a 20 bDRS through 279 games at second base, a 2 bDRS at shortstop through 275 games, and a -13 bDRS through 172 games in centre, which was heavily impacted by the -15 he put up last season while battling a hamstring injury.

One trade option the Blue Jays should explore this offseason is Diamondbacks INF/OF Ketel Marte and his switch-hitting bat.

With the Blue Jays needing a lefty bat in the lineup and after the departure of Marcus Semien this offseason, acquiring Marte from the Diamondbacks will take a lot of prospect capital but is the win-now type of move that the front office needs to make to help bolster this team to take a run at the World Series. Adding the switch hitter to the lineup alongside George Springer, Bo Bichette, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Teoscar Hernandez easily forms one of the most deadly lineups in the American League that can get on base but also hit for power. He also isn’t a rental player, with three years of contract control that contain two club options at a very friendly $10 and $12 million in 2023 and 2024 respectively.

light. Related Story. Why José Ramírez should be the Blue Jays top offseason target

That contract control will be one of the main reasons the Blue Jays will need to part with a mixture of prospects and young talent, with players like Alejandro Kirk, Cavan Biggio, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Gunnar Hoglund, and Orelvis Martinez (who should be untouchable in my opinion) most likely being mentioned in any trade discussions. While the Diamondbacks are not hitting the rebuild button just yet, they did post a 52-110 record last year (tied for the worst in baseball with the Orioles) and could look to acquire some younger talent to bolster their strong farm system by moving veteran players like Marte.

In joining the Jays, Marte would most likely slide into second base and either take over the position from Biggio, pushing him to a utility role if he is not included in the trade, leaving Santiago Espinal at third base while also providing some additional outfield depth in their newly acquired player. THe club could also put him in centre field and push Springer to one of the corners but there is some give and take with how the club could use Marte over the next three years.

This deal would most likely result in the Jays not having enough depth to also acquire Ramirez from Cleveland, who may or may not be available for trade purposes anyway, but stranger things have happened when it comes to the Blue Jays franchise and pulling off big moves.

Next. Five Moves the Club Should Make Post-Lockout. dark

Adding Ketel Marte to the Blue Jays squad is the type of acquisition that really moves the needle and considering he isn’t just a one-and-done rental player, this trade sets the roster over the next few seasons with the current young core and veteran talent.

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