After Burnes, Adames’ final year of team control probably holds the most value in a trade. He led the Brewers with 24 home runs and 80 RBI, but his OPS has declined for two consecutive seasons, from .818 in 2021 and .756 last year to .717 in 2023. He is one the better defensive shortstops with a dWAR of 1.7, the 6th best Defensive Runs Saved of +8, and 2nd highest Outs Above Average of +16. MLBTR projects his 2024 arbitration salary at $12.4M, up from $8.7M in 2023.
If the Dodgers are truly targeting Bo Bichette, could a year of Adames provide a bridge to rising Jays shortstop prospects like Orelvis Martinez, Leo Jimenez, Josh Kasevich and 2023 first-round pick Arjun Nimmala? Or could he slide over to third base to replace Matt Chapman, and give Martinez and Addison Barger another year of development?
Bichette has two years of team control left, so if he is unwilling to sign a long term contract extension with Toronto, his trade value will never be higher coming off another strong season with 4.9 bWAR. While we all hope he decides to sign a big contract to stay in Toronto, if that doesn’t seem likely, the Jays front office would have to listen to reasonable trade proposals from teams with multiple top-100 prospects like the Dodgers. Trading separately for Adames could be the back-up plan for 2024?