4. Blue Jays: Randal Grichuk
There’s been some unfounded speculation that the Blue Jays might consider trading outfielder Randal Grichuk, and it’s certainly not out of the question. With George Springer in the fold, Toronto has a full, capable outfield with Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and Teoscar Hernandez, both of whom are under control through 2023. Cavan Biggio might be the fourth outfielder, too, if the Jays opt to upgrade at either second or third base.
So why pay Grichuk, who’s essentially the fourth outfielder at the moment, nearly $21 million total over the next two seasons to serve as a depth option? He has the ability to start despite a down campaign in 2021 (career-worst .703 OPS and 89 OPS+) and plenty of teams need outfield help for a reasonable AAV (cheaper than Aaron Hicks!).
Small market teams such as the Guardians could use the help and big market behemoths like the Dodgers would stand to benefit from adding a guy like Grichuk to their outfield rotation. The suitors will be aplenty. Yankees fans will especially love to see him go since he’s clobbered 17 homers against the Bombers (the second most against ANY team in his career) since arriving in Toronto back in 2018.
The Jays have $136 million committed to the 2022 payroll and could stand to increase their flexibility by getting Grichuk’s $10.33 million salary off the books in 2022 and 2023 (that year, the payroll hikes up to nearly $150 million). Expect movement here and more additions from Toronto.