Option Three: Finding the solution internally
Without a question, the Jays may already have the solution right on their roster now in Cavan Biggio. After all, he had been fantastic down the stretch for the Jays in helping them reach the postseason this past year. Especially during September, he practically became an everyday player for the team as in 26 games, he led the Jays’ offensive attack with a .277 average, .408 OBP, .781 OPS, with 17 runs scored, five doubles, one home run, 14 RBI, 18 walks and 19 strikeouts.
Biggio was so impressive that he was inserted into the heart of the order in the lineup along with the big boys, along with taking the starting job away from Merrifield at second base heading into the postseason. On top of that, he even flashed the leather a few times with some solid defensive plays, showing his increased confidence in his defensive abilities as well. It appears as though his struggles at the start of the season was probably due to a lack of playing time, as his rise to prominence happened to coincide with his increased playing time down the stretch. As a result, the Jays may have their replacement right there without having to worry any more than they need to.
If the Jays are still not 100% confident in Biggio’s abilities, there are two great backup options available in place already as well. If they are looking for strong defensive play, Santiago Espinal is more than ready to provide that to the team at the position. If they are looking for some added power and pop, Davis Schneider has shown that ability during his brief two-month stint at the end of the season with the ballclub in 2023. All else fails, if the Jays cannot make up their mind amongst them, they could always go back to employing a platoon role at second base, with one of Espinal or Schneider accompanying Biggio in the duo.
In reality, they shouldn’t need to dip into the minor league pool, but if the Jays want to give another promising prospect a shot at it, Addison Barger is definitely ready to make the jump to the major league level entering the 2024 season after narrowly missing out on the team’s Opening Day roster in 2023. However, the Jays don’t really need to force their raw prospect right into the thick of things when they already have the three bonafide, MLB-ready options to deploy from above, so it is certainly a no-brainer what the best options available are that the Jays should pursue. Now it’s just a matter of what the management thinks about it.
Verdict: Highly likely