Make no mistake about it, the Toronto Blue Jays are going to make a hard push towards a playoff run in the second-half of the 2023 season. At 53-41, the club currently sits in third place in the AL East but is just 4.5 GB of the Orioles and 5.5 GB of the first-place Rays. This thing could actually be doable.
Thanks to a recent 3-7 stretch from the Rays, the club that once seemed unbeatable is suddenly starting to look like they're coming back down to earth, and fast. However, recent rumors suggest that they are going to be aggressive at the deadline, perhaps even in the form a Shohei Ohtani-sized pursuit.
To make this thing happen, the Blue Jays are undoubtedly going to need to bring aboard a new face or two to help things along. The offense has been solid; currently ranking 13th in the majors in runs scored, fifth in batting average, seventh in wRC+ and fifth in hits. The pitching staff has been far from perfect, but they currently rank third in the majors in K/9, sixth in ERA and 10th in FIP. Not top of the line, but it'll do.
There are certainly a few small spots here and there that the Jays could upgrade at this year's trade deadline. Bringing aboard a power hitter as a backup position player/occasional designated hitter is one with perhaps one more pitcher (likely a starter) being the other. With the uncertainty of Alek Manoah and his immediate future paired with the unknown that is Hyun Jin Ryu, a starting pitcher along the lines of Marcus Stroman, Lucas Giolito or Jordan Montgomery may be the move.
With any outside additions, obviously players would need to be removed from the Blue Jays' active roster. Let's dive into some candidates that could be sent packing in the event that a trade is made.