DUNEDIN, Fla. – Following this year’s spring training, the Toronto Blue Jays have every reason to be confident entering into the 2017 season.
The Blue Jays advanced to the playoffs last season where they beat the Baltimore Orioles in the wild card Game. They then moved on to defeat the Texas Rangers in the Division Series before losing to the Cleveland Indians in five games during the American League Championship Series.
Veteran right fielder Jose Bautista signed a one-year deal worth $18 million on Jan. 18, after Bautista became a free agent following the 2016 season. The Blue Jays also offered Bautista $17 million should he continue on to the 2018 season, as well as a $20 million vesting option for 2019.
There has been a lot of talk of who will replace Edwin Encarnacion, a first basemen and designated hitter who recently signed with the Cleveland Indians, and it looks like Kendrys Morales is front-runner to be designated hitter in his place. Morales played his previous two seasons with the Kansas City Royals, where he batted .263 with a .327 on-base percentage and had 30 home runs.
The Blue Jays have also added Steve Pearce, a utility player, and Justin Smoak, a first baseman, to the lineup. Both will most likely share some time on first base this season, according to CBS Sports.
The Blue Jays’ spring training will begin on Feb. 15 when the catchers and pitchers report to the Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.