With the White Sox dangling huge slugger in trades talks, the Blue Jays need to strike

The Blue Jays need to improve their offensive production next year to be serious contenders, with an intriguing talent potentially available in Chicago.

Chicago White Sox v Washington Nationals
Chicago White Sox v Washington Nationals / Jess Rapfogel/GettyImages

There's little denying offence was the Blue Jays' biggest disappointment in 2023. It was the main reason they underachieved, ranking just tied-14th in the Majors as a whole and eighth in the AL specifically, with 746 runs.

One area in particular the Blue Jays will need to get some help, is at DH. Due to the combination of his only signing a one-year deal, up-and-down form and contemplating retirement, Brandon Belt is highly unlikely to be back in Toronto next year.

One player who could be of interest to the Blue Jays, is Eloy Jiménez. As per ESPN's Jesse Rogers, White Sox general manager Chris Getz confirmed teams are interested in the slugger.

Certainly, Jiménez would make for an intriguing addition to the Blue Jays lineup. He's coming off his most productive season since his rookie year in 2019, particularly in respect of games played, home runs, RBI and walks, as well as a career-low 19.0 strikeout rate.

One note of caution is that the 26-year-old has dealt with injury issues throughout his time in the Majors. However, this does seem to have been resolved by mainly playing him at DH this past season, hence why he appeared in his most games since 2019.

Interestingly, it speaks to the upside with Jiménez, that his best season since his rookie year is still considered not good enough. In this respect he does have the talent and power to produce so much more, and assuming he can remain healthier moving forward, he is only just entering what is considered the prime years for a baseball player.

It should be noted Getz did -- quite rightly -- add that any deal for the 2020 Silver Slugger would have to make sense for both sides. However, for all the potential the young hitter does have, his value is compromised to a certain extent by his aforementioned durability issues.

Further, as per Dan Hayes of The Athletic, the White Sox are reportedly planning to reduce their payroll from their franchise record level of this past season. How Jiménez and his $13 million base salary for next year factors in, could be key in any potential trade.

Assuming the Blue Jays do decide to purse the Dominican Republic native and can agree a deal with the White Sox, they'll at least have some protection against any injury problems. His contract has club options for both 2025 and 2026, which both include a $3 million buyout.

Next. Blue Jays predicted to improve, 3 to regress per FanGraphs Steamer projections. 3 Blue Jays predicted to improve, 3 to regress per FanGraphs Steamer projections. dark

While not expected to be a factor in any decision the Blue Jays ultimately make, it's at least worth noting FanGraphs' projections for Jiménez next season. They actually predict he will play in a career-high 141 games and hit 29 homers and a career-high 88 RBI, as part of a .276/.334/.486 slash line and .820 OPS.