The MLB offseason is about to kick into full gear, as free agency and the annual Baseball Winter Meetings commence early next month. All 30 clubs will be looking to improve their roster one way or the other, including the Toronto Blue Jays, coming off a frustrating 67-95 season.
While the Jays suffered their third straight losing season, they do have reasons for optimism in 2020, thanks to a trio of young hitters in Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio, all second-generation players coming off impressive rookie seasons in the bigs.
Here are three players Toronto may look to acquire this offseason to bolster its chances of returning to the postseason next year.
3. Cameron Maybin, OF, New York Yankees
While Toronto's infield includes all three of their budding second-generation stars, the outfield is more of a question mark heading into 2020. The team has a clear void in centerfield specifically, which can be filled rather cheaply with a proven veteran like Cameron Maybin. In 239 at-bats for the New York Yankees last season, Maybin had his best year as a pro, hitting .285/.364/.494 with a career-high 11 homers. Maybin provides speed, defense and improving plate discipline, which should cause several suitors to be after the 32-year-old outfielder this offseason.
2. Kyle Gibson, SP, Minnesota Twins
Pitching in the AL East is no picnic, and while many starters struggle when making the transition, the least they can do is provide ample innings for their new team. Kyle Gibson has averaged 178.1 innings over the past two seasons, and while he suffered a bad second-half swoon in 2019 (4.92 ERA post-break), he still posted a respectable strikeout-to-walk ratio of 160/56. Gibson has pitched his whole career with the Minnesota Twins, but may be ready to move on from the team if they don't offer him the contract he desires. He could even contend as the Blue Jays' Opening Day starter in 2020, due a dearth of other strong options currently on the roster.
1. Josh Donaldson, 3B, Atlanta Braves
While the Blue Jays don't have a need at third base (where Guerrero plans to stick), they can use a veteran presence in the lineup and dugout. Josh Donaldson played three years and change with the Jays, including his 2015 MVP season. If he is willing to switch to a more multi-positional role, which could include time at first base, third base and DH, the Blue Jays could be willing to welcome back their former superstar to lead a team of hungry and talented youngsters. The Braves are loaded with options on offense, which could result in Donaldson looking elsewhere, and making a return to the AL where he can play DH as he hits his mid-30s.
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