There have been no less than 20 different players tied to the Toronto Blue Jays at varying points this offseason. The needs have been clear: add a power hitter, replace Matt Chapman's production at third base and add another pitcher.
To this point, Chad Green has been re-signed and Yariel Rodriguez is reportedly in agreement with the club on a four-year deal. Power hitters and third basemen? Nowhere to be found. The Blue Jays have been "in on" a frustratingly high amount of players this winter and on Monday night, one of them was traded from the Twins to the Mariners.
According to MLB.com's Mark Feinsand, the Twins and Mariners lined up on a deal that would send switch-hitting infielder Jorge Polanco to the AL West. ESPN's Kiley McDaniel followed up with the details, saying that the full deal is as follows:
Blue Jays miss out on top infield trade target as he heads to the Mariners
In Polanco, the Blue Jays could have very easily killed two birds with one stone when it comes to their offseason wish list. He plays second base, third base and shortstop, is a switch-hitter and brings a bit of pop to the dish. Adding Polanco would have been a popular move amongst fans as well, as he has long been a favorable trade candidate amongst followers of the Jays.
Last year, Polanco made it into just 80 games for the Twins as he battled through multiple injuries including hamstring, ankle and knee ailments. In that small sample size, he still managed to hit 14 home runs with 48 RBI and a 115 OP+. He has historically been a fairly durable player and would have been an immediate upgrade over some of the infield options the Blue Jays currently have.
Davis Schneider and Cavan Biggio are two of the options to fill out the Blue Jays infield in 2024, and both figure to play prominent roles. However, someone like Santiago Espinal, who is being kept on the roster only by the fact that he can play shortstop and the other two cannot, is a player that is expendable and could've been shown the door with a Polanco acquisition.
Instead, the Jays need to - once again - pivot their attention elsewhere. We've touched on it before, but it feels like every day we're ultimately moving closer to a Blue Jays-Matt Chapman reunion. At this point, he's going to be the lone player left on the market for the Jays to bring aboard.