Blue Jays Rumor Roundup: 2 former MVPs, Japanese ace firmly on club's radar

Sep 5, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Christian Yelich (22)
Sep 5, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Christian Yelich (22) / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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Christian Yelich

Previously, we had taken a look at Yelich as a player the Blue Jays would be smart to target. He's got a massive contract, but that could play in the Jays' favor. Since he is still owed so much money, the Milwaukee Brewers are likely going to have to either eat some of the money, or settle for less of a return in trade talks because of the monetary situation.

According to everyone's favorite MLB insider Jon Heyman, the Blue Jays are "kicking around Yelich" in internal trade discussions.

Yelich, 32, is under control through the end of the 2028 season. His contract also comes with a team option for the 2029 campaign. When he first signed this deal back in 2020, he was fresh off of an MVP Award and a second-place finish in the voting the next season.

Since then, his production had tapered off a bit but is now rising once again. Last season, he had 19 home runs with 76 driven in in 144 games. His 124 OPS+ was the highest he posted in a year since 2019 when he finished second in the MVP voting.

It's worth noting that the two-time batting champion has dealt with multiple back injuries in recent years, and those are known to be ones that nag you and have a high likelihood of not healing properly. If his offensive output from 2023 was any indication, he may be turning things around.

The Brewers are a club with multiple tradeable assets. After they non-tendered Brandon Woodruff and began dangling Corbin Burnes and Willy Adames in trade talks, their roster began to feel like an "everything must go" situation. Yelich and his contract is surely something the club would love to get out from under, even if he's beginning to turn things around.

With Nathan Lukes projected to be the Blue Jays' every day left fielder in 2024, the time is now for an upgrade. Sure, there are multiple free agent options out there, but adding Yelich would be a massive get for this Jays club.