As the Blue Jays look to retool for 2025, an early look at potential free agents

Who can they add to make one last run at a World Series with Guerrero Jr. and Bichette?
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Which free agents could the Jays add for 2025 and beyond?

Luckily for Toronto, the upcoming 2024-25 free agent class is absolutely stacked, with All-Stars available at every position, along with a number of Silver Sluggers, Cy Young winners and former World Series champions.

Jim Bowden of The Athletic (subscription required) ranked the top 100 available free agents this upcoming offseason, and its a smorgasbord of talent for a team in need of offence, starting pitching depth and high leverage relief options.

The crème de la crème

The Blue Jays should have somewhere in the neighbourhood of ~$60M in annual payroll capacity to work with under the 2025 MLB luxury tax threshold of $241M, after accounting for all of their committed contracts and likely arbitration awards for players next season. Of course, ownership has also shown a willingness to spend above that limit, although they should be below that threshold after selling their pending free agents this year.

So technically, they do have the payroll room to add a big contract for the best available free agents, who include outfielder Juan Soto, aces Corbin Burnes and Max Fried, third baseman Alex Bregman, first baseman Pete Alonso and closer Clay Holmes.

Of those players, Burnes, Bregman and Holmes are all likely the best in terms of potential fit. Soto appears happy in New York, and is likely to sign a massive deal with one of the two teams there, while Alonso would be redundant on a team making a final run with Guerrero.

29-year-old Burnes is a bona fide ace, and is among the favourites to win the AL Cy Young this year, with a 9-3 record, 2.4 fWAR and 2.28 ERA in 17 starts and 106.2 innings. Adding him to headline a 2025 Blue Jays rotation with Kevin Gausman, Bassitt and José Berríos would make the Jays a fearsome opponent. 30-year-old southpaw Fried would offer similar dominance; he’s 7-3 with a 2.91 ERA in 16 starts and 96 innings for Atlanta this year, with a 1.9 fWAR.

Bregman is 30-years-old now, and he’s hitting below his career numbers, which could lower his price tag; he’s slashing .251/.309/.401 with an OPS of .711 this year (OPS+ 101), but his career averages over 162-games of 27 home runs, 97 RBI and a .272/.368/.480 slash line with an OPS of .849 (32% better than the MLB average over his 9-year career) should all appeal to a Jays team that lacks power.

The 31-year old Holmes has 19 saves with a 2.65 ERA, and depending on Romano’s wonky elbow, the Jays might need a closer with a proven track record in the AL East.