Blue Jays: Non-tendered players the club should consider this offseason

Division Series - San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Two
Division Series - San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Two / Harry How/GettyImages
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Last night was the deadline for teams across the league to offer contracts to eligible players. For the Blue Jays, they decided to non-tender Raimel Tapia, Bradley Zimmer, and Vinny Capra, with all three players becoming free agents. Tapia and Zimmer were already out the door after being DFA'd earlier this week but the Capra decision kind of came out of the woodwork and took some fans by surprise.

After last night's moves, the Blue Jays roster currently stands at 38 players, which includes the four prospects they protected from the Rule 5 draft earlier this week. With a new crop of players hitting the open market, the Blue Jays front office has some fresh faces to consider in order to help improve the squad for next year and beyond.

Here are some non-tendered players the Blue Jays should consider looking at signing this offseason.

Cody Bellinger - CF

The biggest name of the group heading to free agency is former Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger. The former 2019 NL MVP has struggled over the past few seasons, authoring a collective .203/.272/.376 slash line with a .648 OPS and a 74 OPS+ through 295 games. With the Dodgers potentially looking at bringing Aaron Judge aboard and Bellinger projected to earn $18.1 million in arbitration, the former Rookie of the Year was let go and hits free agency for the first time in his career.

Three non-tendered players the Blue Jays should look at signing this offseason.

For the Blue Jays, Bellinger checks off quite a few of the boxes that the club is looking for this winter. He can hit from the left side of the plate and is also a natural centre fielder, which the club could utilize to move George Springer to right field to protect him in the long run from injuries.

With Teoscar Hernández now in Seattle and the recent roster moves, the club will head into Spring Training with Springer, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Whit Merrifield, Cavan Biggio, and Nathan Lukes as outfield options. This could be enticing for prospective free agents looking for playing time given the outfield picture with all the departures. Bellinger sat in the 92nd percentile for Outs Above Average last year in centre field and had two assists on the year against three errors, making him a solid defensive option that could really benefit the Jays squad.

The obvious concern with Bellinger is continued regression, as the Arizona product has really struggled over the past couple of seasons. A change of scenery to a hitter-friendly park such as the Rogers Centre could help change that however, and if the Blue Jays can bring him in on a short-term "prove it" deal (which has worked in the past), this has the makings of a solid match if the price isn't too crazy given the numerous suitors and if the Jays strike out on other free agent outfield options like Brandon Nimmo.