With the uncertainty surrounding whether or not either Kiermaier or Merrifield will return after this year, the Jays must keep their options open in terms of who will fill the void in the third outfield spot entering the 2024 season. Both Cavan Biggio and Davis Schneider probably can’t take hold of the spot on a permanent basis, since they provide a better fit for the infield or the utilityman role. In addition, outside of top prospect Alan Roden who is currently playing in Double-A New Hampshire, the Jays do not have a MLB-ready player within their top 20 MLB prospects list that has the outfield position as their primary playing position.
As a result, either the Jays need to prepare to open the vault to retain one of Kiermaier or Merrifield, or they will need to find the solution externally via free agency. In the upcoming class, there are some intriguing options available, but none of them are bigger than Cody Bellinger. After all, Bellinger has resurrected his once-promising career with a huge bounce back season with the Chicago Cubs this year. He has definitely regained some of his dominant MVP form back in 2019, as for the season, he has hit .320 with a .916 OPS, along with 84 runs scored, 24 doubles, 24 home runs, 86 RBI and a career-best 19 stolen bases in just 110 games played. At the young age of 28 with plenty left in the tank, he will be definitely be looking for a big, long-term deal, so it could become quite pricey for the Jays if they choose to pursue that route.
Otherwise, some interesting fallback options include former Jay Teoscar Hernández, Hunter Renfroe, and Adam Duvall. In addition, if they fulfill their opt-out clause, both Jorge Soler and Michael Conforto could be strong options as well. Whatever the case may be, the Jays will definitely need to invest in this area to maintain solid defence in the outfield, along with providing some necessary offensive punch at the same time.