3 players the Blue Jays should keep a close eye on and 2 to avoid as the deadline nears

Chicago Cubs v Pittsburgh Pirates, Marcus Stroman
Chicago Cubs v Pittsburgh Pirates, Marcus Stroman / Joe Sargent/GettyImages
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2 players to avoid at all costs

Zack Greinke, Kansas City Royals

With the Kansas City Royals practically out of the playoff race ever since the year began, the bulk of their roster is basically available if teams were willing to call for help. But specifically, one intriguing pitching option that could draw a team’s interest is that of former Cy Young winner Zack Greinke. Greinke has had an illustrious career that has spanned two decades where he has brought his strong work ethic and winning mentality to whichever team he pitched for. We have even speculated earlier this year that Greinke could be the missing piece of the puzzle to help the Jays in their championship aspirations.

But one thing that could be on his mind as his career begins to wind down is that he has yet to get that one World Series ring that has eluded him the past 20 years despite playing for strong contending teams such as the Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers. As a result, he may be willing to give it one last shot with a contending team to make it happen before he calls it a career. It may be tempting for the Jays to inquire about the six-time All-Star and six-time Gold Glover, especially after seeing his effective season he produced just last year at the age of 37, along with his stellar pitching pedigree from the past, but common sense says they should steer clear of him.

For the 2023 season, Greinke finally appears to no longer have it anymore, pitching to a 1-8 record with a 5.31 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, giving up 48 earned runs, a whopping 15 home runs, with 11 walks and 61 strikeouts over 81.1 innings in 16 starts. With those numbers, the Jays would probably be even better off testing the waters of Bowden Francis or one of their farmhands as a starter than give Greinke the chance to be on their team. Only time will tell when Greinke admits his time is done, but when he does, he definitely will not be wearing a Blue Jays uniform for sure.