Inconsistency plagued George Springer for much of 2023 with the Blue Jays

How did Springer fare during his 2023 season with the Blue Jays?

Wild Card Series - Toronto Blue Jays v Minnesota Twins - Game Two
Wild Card Series - Toronto Blue Jays v Minnesota Twins - Game Two / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages

When it comes to George Springer, the Toronto Blue Jays know exactly what they are getting from him when he comes to the ballpark each game. He always gives his full heart and effort day in and day out, along with providing above-average offensive output and solid defence at the same time.

However, something just seemed to be lacking in Springer’s play during the 2023 season with the Jays. He displayed some inconsistency at times, as he would vary between hot streaks and slumps throughout the season. His highest point of the season came when he moved into second place on the all-time list for career leadoff home runs behind only Rickey Henderson. His lowest point of the season came at a time when he was mired in an alarming 0-for-35 slump near the end of July. In the end, the Jays even had to move him out of his signature leadoff spot in the lineup to get him going again.

But overall, Springer still managed to put up some solid offensive numbers with a .258 batting average, 102 OPS+, .732 OPS, 87 runs scored, 25 doubles, 21 home runs and 72 driven in. However, in the bigger picture, it was the second consecutive season in which his offensive output declined from the previous year when projected over a 162-game season pace.

Springer's Stats (projected over a 162-game pace)

Home Runs











If we take it a little further and examine his advanced statistical metrics, other than his slight improvements in his strikeout, whiff and chase rates, the majority of his batting stats had declined from the previous season, including xwOBA, xBA, xSLG, average exit velocity, barrel rate, hard hit rate, and sweet-spot rate.

Springer's League Ranking (according to Baseball Savant)




79th percentile

58th percentile


78th percentile

64th percentile


75th percentile

45th percentile

Average Exit Velocity

43rd percentile

29th percentile

Barrel %

56th percentile

42nd percentile

Hard-Hit %

63rd percentile

44th percentile

Sweet-Spot %

29th percentile

26th percentile

On the bright side, Springer did perform adequately compared to some of his teammates when it came to hitting with runners in scoring position. He sported a .269 average in those situations (team average was .260 and league average was .256) while cashing in 46 baserunners in the process. So despite his regression in his overall offensive output, at least he was coming up clutch at times when the team needed him.

With regards to his defence, Springer was shifted from center field to right field for the 2023 season. It was expected that the move would make his life a whole lot easier in the field while maintaining his legs and health with a less demanding position. However, his defence was also another area on the decline, with a Range (Outs Above Average) falling from 76th percentile in the previous season to 66th, and an Arm Value from 54th percentile to a very concerning 14th percentile this season.

It was believed that when the Jays signed Springer to his six-year contract in 2021 that eventually he will be moving into a full-time DH role. But at the current rate, that plan could be moved ahead earlier than expected if his fielding numbers continue to drop.

Some may start to think that perhaps father time may be beginning to creep in for Springer. After all, he will be 34 in 2024 and isn't getting younger. Back in late April, he did suffer through several weeks of a viral illness that required him to take rounds of antibiotics, as well as needing the use of oxygen canisters while he played. Perhaps that took a toll on him for much of the rest of the season and ended up affecting his performance.

With three more years remaining on his $150M contract, this could become worrisome for the Jays if Springer's regression continues. Hopefully, this past season was just an anomaly and that he will be able to turn things around in 2024 and revert back to his old form.

With regards to assigning the appropriate letter grade for Springer’s overall performance in 2023 with the Jays, despite his steady decline in offensive output and outfield defence, he did help the team in manufacturing runs whether at the plate or on the basepaths. But given what was expected of him, his production in 2023 still ended up being on the disappointing side, leading to a B- grade. Springer will definitely be looking forward to lead the Jays once again in the 2024 season and making sure that everyone will forget about this past season.

Grade: B-

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