The Blue Jays are reportedly considering a trade for Andrew Benintendi, but how feasible is such a move for the 2021 Gold Glove Award winner?
With the Major League Baseball trade deadline effectively one month away, speculation is starting to increase in terms of potential targets for different ball clubs. The Blue Jays are no exception, as they aim to strengthen the roster for their postseason challenge.
According to Jon Morosi of the MLB Network, one such player the Blue Jays are apparently interested in is the Kansas City Royals’ Andrew Benintendi. Certainly, he would make for an intriguing addition.
Benintendi’s resume includes winning a World Series with the Boston Red Sox in 2018 and being awarded his first Gold Glove last year. In addition, he finished second in voting for Rookie of the Year in 2017, behind a certain Aaron Judge.
In terms of offence, the 27-year-old is an excellent hitter. He is natural who appears to have no weaknesses, especially after a noticeable improvement in his power.
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Arguably Benintendi’s best season yet with the bat was 2017, when he hit career highs of 20 home runs and 90 RBI. This year could see him potentially set new personal bests for hits, batting average, OBP and strikeout rate.
Defensively, you could argue the left fielder was underrated before getting his due last year with his aforementioned inaugural Gold Glove Award, leading his position in fielding percentage. He’s a good athlete who would be perceived by many as an improvement over Loudres Gurriel Jr.
The main factor which could conceivably go against attempting a trade for Benintendi, is that he is on a one-year contract (for $8.5 million). What would the Blue Jays be prepared to give up, for a player who could walk away at the end of the season as an unrestricted free agent?
Pending how serious they are, the Blue Jays will likely receive competition from other ball clubs. Among those speculated to also be interested in Benintendi, include the likes of the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies.
Blue Jays fans can be forgiven for wondering why the ball club isn’t more focused on improving their pitching depth? Despite the addition of Sergio Romo, too many players have suffered either injuries or loss of form, leaving Toronto still needing more arms.
In this respect, Morosi did add that the Royals have an appealing bullpen. Scott Barlow would seem to be the best option, although Josh Staumont and Dylan Coleman would also be good candidates.
Again though, it depends what the Blue Jays are prepared to offer as a return package. Even though the Yankees are pulling away in the AL East, what Toronto does before the deadline will speak volumes about how invested they are in pursuing a World Series championship this year.
What is your opinion of Benintendi? Do you think he is worth pursuing and if so, what would you realistically like the Blue Jays to offer in exchange? Let us know in the comments section below.