3 offseason moves that hurt the Blue Jays the most heading into 2024

Juan Soto & Shohei Ohtani at the 2021 T-Mobile Home Run Derby
Juan Soto & Shohei Ohtani at the 2021 T-Mobile Home Run Derby / Justin Edmonds/GettyImages
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Not signing Shohei Ohtani

Let's rip the band-aid off quick. Shohei Ohtani is the most talented player in baseball to hit the market, and unsurprisingly, his free agency was heavily followed by both MLB front offices, and the entirety of baseball media. When the Blue Jays were rumoured to be one of the biggest suitors for Ohtani, every Jays fan was completely tuned in. Ohtani was the power hitter they'd desperately needed, while also being a top of the line starter who would slot into the Jays rotation in 2025, giving them a formidable starting pitching staff for the the long-term future.

After hearing a report of Ohtani heading to Toronto on a plane, it felt too good to be true. That's exactly what it ended up being, as the report was false and Ohtani promptly signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers for $700M shortly after. That saga set the bar for the Jays' offseason to come, as what could possibly top being a finalist for Shohei Ohtani?

It's hard enough to not acquire the player, but the feeling is much more devastating, when it appeared to be so close, just to miss out entirely. This near-miss will linger around the Blue Jays for a long time, and every time Ohtani hits a majestic shot out of the park, Jays fans won't be able to help imagining what might have been. There is a solace in Ohtani signing in the National League, staying as far away from the Blue Jays as possible, but there's simply no easy way to forget about how the entire situation played out.