What could the Blue Jays get in a trade for one of their superstars?

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Okay Blue Jays fans, we need to talk …

Saturday’s dramatic comeback aside, it’s hard to deny that the 2024 season is teetering on the brink of outright calamity. Sitting last in the AL East behind what to this point has been one of the worst offenses in franchise history, the Jays are clinging by their fingernails to any sort of relevance.

But it’s actually worse than that.

Down years happen. What makes the Jays’ current predicament so particularly distressing is that both of its two current faces of the franchise – Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette – are entering the final year of their contract in 2025.

That neither has yet been signed long-term is somewhat shocking, especially considering where the game of baseball has gone in recent years. Think about it – Ronald Acuña Jr., Julio Rodríguez, Fernando Tatís Jr., Corbin Carroll, Bobby Witt Jr., Wander Franco, Michael Harris II, even Keibert Ruiz … all signed to long-term extensions before their 24th birthday.

But not Vladdy and Bo.

What this means is that if they do not sign an extension this offseason, then 2025 effectively becomes a lame duck season, with every game representing another tick of the clock in the countdown to their eventual exit in free agency.

In fact, if they don’t sign an extension this offseason, they may not be on the team at all in 2025. The Jays front office has shown itself anxious to trade beloved star players before they reach the final year of their contract – think Lourdes Gurriel and Teoscar Hernández, or, for that matter, Marcus Stroman – so why wouldn’t they be preparing to do the same with Vladdy and Bo instead of losing them for nothing?

As painful as it might be to hear, we may now be in the final days of the Guerrero/Bichette era in Toronto.

Which brings us back to where we are now. Is the 2024 season over? Is there really no hope the Jays can turn things around? If so, well, put it this way, the further from free agency you can trade Guerrero and Bichette, the more value they are likely to have.

It’s indicative of how poorly the 2024 season has gone so far that this is now a topic of discussion, but here we are – if the Jays were to trade Vladdy or Bo, or both, what could they expect to get in return?

What could the Blue Jays get in a trade for one of their superstars?

Here is a small piece of good news. Given their age, Vlad (25-years-old) and Bo (26) occupy an unusual position for potential trade candidates – established enough in the game that they would appeal to contenders, while still young enough that they would appeal to rebuilding teams looking to accelerate the process. Simply, the pool of potential suitors would extend from the very top of the standings to the very bottom.

As such, there are two broad categories of trade the Jays might find on the table – on one hand, deals with teams looking to go for it right now in exchange for prospects, and on the other, moves for an older star from a team entering a rebuild.

What might each category look like? Well, let’s take a look.