With the Toronto Blue Jays all prepared for some intense action to make some acquisitions at the trade deadline to address their needs going into the stretch run, there will be some assets that will be going the other way to complete the transactions. Some we may agree that it’s time to move on, whereas for others, it will hurt a bit to lose someone that could end up being valuable down the road.
Here, we take a look at five Blue Jays whose days may be numbered, as they will most likely be on the move by the trade deadline.
For the case of Santiago Espinal, it is just unfortunate that he may be the victim of the numbers game, along with having one of his worst seasons in the majors so far in his professional baseball career. Coming off an All-Star season back in 2022, Espinal was expected to battle it out with Cavan Biggio and Whit Merrifield for the second base job for the 2023 season. Espinal appeared to have the upper hand going into the season, due to his stellar defence, along with his solid performance at the plate just a year ago, whereas both Biggio and Merrifield were hoping to find a groove and potentially get back their prior form from previous years to help contribute to the team as much as they can.
Well, now more than halfway through the season, Merrifield has definitely returned to his former All-Star form and has been a main contributor to the Jays’ offence for much of the year, securing his spot in the everyday lineup as a result. On the other hand, Espinal has struggled in a part-time role, hitting .230 with a .607 OPS, with 22 runs scored, only one home run and 13 RBI in 54 games played. Espinal has also been named by our own Eric Treuden, along with Ben Nicholson-Smith on Jays Talk Plus on Sportsnet as one of the current roster players that won’t survive the trade deadline.
With Espinal’s role on the team diminished quite significantly since last year, it makes the most sense to give him the opportunity to flourish once again on a new team, while recouping some valuable assets in return for a win-win situation for both parties.