The Toronto Blue Jays have completed a trade for All-Star infielder Whit Merrifield from the Kansas City Royals. Adding an All-Star caliber player to an already loaded roster, the move was rather divisive amongst Blue Jays fans. Merrifield has been a very good player across his seven years in the MLB, but is in the midst of his worst season yet.
Merrifield has a batting average of .240 and has an on-base percentage of .290. These statistics do little to encourage fans who feel this move won’t help the team nearly enough. Though if the change of scenery can help him return to his All-Star potential, Toronto Blue Jays fans will happily embrace him.
Jeff Passan was the first to break the news of this trade on Twitter.
The Toronto Blue Jays are almost certain to make the playoffs, therefore seeing them look for ways to improve at the deadline is encouraging.
Since the Blue Jays do not have glaring weaknesses in the positions Merrifield can play, this move is somewhat surprising.
The trade deadline has the potential to make or break a team’s championship aspirations, and this move will be heavily scrutinized going forward. If Merrifield can return to the level of play he showed in his first six seasons in the league, the move will be a success. If he is unable to escape his recent slump, fans fear this trade might be a disaster.
Even those who liked the trade have reservations about the trade deadline in its entirety.
The American League East is one of the most competitive divisions in the MLB, resulting in improvements being key to sustained success.
The Toronto Blue Jays were expected to attempt an upgrade to their pitching staff, but they chose to zig when everybody expected them to zag.
The Blue Jays are loading for a postseason push and hope that Whit Merrifield can get them to where they want to be.
Toronto Blue Jays fans hope to see improvement from Whit Merrifield
With talents like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette surrounding Merrifield, he is being put in a great position to bust his slump. As long as he does, this trade will be a resounding success, especially if he performs well in the playoffs.
The Blue Jays used the trade deadline to add what could be a key depth player to their already strong roster. While competition in the American League will be fierce, the Blue Jays are poised to be a threat in October.