Justin Turner is signing with the Blue Jays, giving the club a much-needed power bat

Sep 27, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Red Sox designated hitter Justin Turner (2) watches
Sep 27, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Red Sox designated hitter Justin Turner (2) watches / Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

There are few teams in the league that checked into more power hitters this offseason than the Toronto Blue Jays. Joc Pederson, Isaac Paredes, Jorge Soler, Juan Soto, Shohei Ohtani, JD Martinez, Cody Bellinger, you name it.

Early on Tuesday morning, ex-MLB player Carlos Baerga, who has both gotten solid scoops and epicly failed in the past on breaking news, posted on Instagram that the Jays were in agreement with infielder Justin Turner. The baseball world awoke with mixed feelings as it waited for confirmation from elsewhere.

MLB Network's Jon Morosi and The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal have now both confirmed that Turner is indeed heading to Toronto. Morosi followed soon after with the financial details, saying that the Blue Jays are signing Turner to a one-year, $13M contract with $1.5M in bonuses.

Turner, 39, is at long last giving the Blue Jays a power bat that they've so desperately been searching for. A lineup already featuring the likes of Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette, George Springer and Danny Jansen isn't exactly starved for power, but the need for one more bat has been there since the beginning of the offseason.

Last season, Turner suited up for the division rival Boston Red Sox. He made it into 146 games and hit 23 home runs with 96 RBI - the most he's ever driven in across a 15-year big league career. His 114 OPS+ still puts his output at 14 percent above league-average and his .800 OPS is no slouch either.

A third baseman by trade, it's unclear where exactly Turner will line up for the Jays on defense. He had a negative DRS at third last year but can play some decent first base. Otherwise, it's likely that he sees the majority of his playing time as the club's designated hitter, which keeps his bat in the lineup and his decent-but-not-great glove off the field.

In signing Turner, it's worth wondering if this closes the book on a Matt Chapman reunion north of the border. The otherworldly defender would be a significant add for the Jays, but if the plan is for Turner to get time at the hot corner, re-signing Chapman makes little to no sense. An alternate way of thinking could be that Turner does play the field and the Jays pivot to Jorge Soler, signing him to be their every day designated hitter.