Shohei Ohtani, left, will cater to the Blue Jays' two biggest needs.  (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Should Blue Jays go all-in for Shohei Ohtani trade?

The Toronto Blue Jays are expected to be on the offensive by an August 2 trade deadline, but can they make a splash for one of the sport’s brightest stars? And would it be worth it?

No, this article is not about Juan Soto, although it’s also fun to speculate about. Instead, it will focus on the two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani.

Earlier this week, the Los Angeles Angels were adamant about not making Ohtani available through trade, who is eligible for free agency after next season. This should sound familiar to fans of the Washington Nationals, who heard GM Mike Rizzo take a similar stance about Soto earlier this season.

Now, Angels GM Perry Minassian Is Reportedly Ready to Hear Offers on Ohtani New York PostK John Heyman. While a blockbuster business is considered “very unlikely,” Heyman reports that the team isn’t shying away from taking the call.

Heyman believes five teams have been the most offensive for the 28-year-old so far: the San Diego Padres, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, St. Louis Cardinals and Seattle Mariners.

Of course, it remains a very fluid development. Anything could change between now and Tuesday’s 6:00 p.m. ET deadline. In the end, though, it will require a massive race to get the 2021 AL MVP away from Los Angeles.

Toronto is likely to have the pieces necessary to make a compelling offer for Ohtani, with most business proposals probably centered around key parts of its agricultural system. Teams may also be forced to include players from their major league roster.

In all likelihood, the Blue Jays will need to surrender top prospects Gabriel Moreno, Ricky Tiedemann and Orelvis Martinez. He may also have to trade infielder Jordan Groshans, right-hander Nate Pearson and possibly Santiago Espinal or Lourdes Gurrell Jr.

No matter how you cut it, getting ohtani won’t be cheap. Doing so would significantly weaken the organization’s likely pipeline, which Ross Atkins and Mark Shapiro have worked hard to replenish since 2016.

However, one important detail to keep in mind is whether you are a generational genius. Players like Ohtani are often not available. The last time a two-way star of his caliber switched teams was when the New York Yankees bought Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox in 1920 for $125,000.

Shohei Ohtani, left, will cater to the Blue Jays' two biggest needs.  (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Shohei Ohtani, left, will cater to the Blue Jays’ two biggest needs. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

For a team like the Blue Jays, who currently require impact starting pitchers and left-handed hitters, achieving a two-time All-Star with one move would satisfy two needs.

Offensively, Ohtani would fit perfectly into Toronto’s already talented batting line-up. The presence of the 2021 Silver Slugger will add some much-needed balance to the top half of the lineup, which is predominantly right-handed.

Interim manager John Schneider will have plenty of exciting options at his disposal. A possible combination might be the insertion of Ohtani between George Springer and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. The second might be a lefty slugger hit behind Guerrero, placing him in front of Alejandro Kirk.

Adding another talented hitter to the mix – someone who has scored 67 home runs and dropped .256/.363/.550 with 144 wRC+ scores in 254 games since 2021 – makes the Blue Jays the best offense in baseball. will provide. Not even Aaron Judge and the Yankees will compare to Toronto’s loaded lineup.

Ohtani would also dramatically improve the team’s starting rotation. The right-hander will join a staff that already includes Alec Manoah, Kevin Gossman and Jose Berios. And he’ll be around for at least the next two seasons.

This season, the Los Angeles two-way superstar recorded ERA (2.81), XERA (2.46), FIP (2.37), strike rate (36.4 percent), walk rate (5.8 percent) and FWAR (3.3 percent).

Adding to his case, the 2018 AL Rookie of the Year improved his first pitch strike (61.3 percent) and swing percentage (39.4 percent), both of which are also career-highs.

The trade for Ohtani would improve the Blue Jays in two important areas: their initial rotation and offense. The bullpen, however, would remain the club’s No. 1 weakness and probably could not be addressed after the agrarian system was destroyed.

This raises the question whether the club would be in a better position to win the World Series by acquiring Ohtani? Maybe, but given the Yankees’ dominance over the AL East, the Blue Jays will still have to navigate a best-of-three wild-card series that’s more or less a crapshoot.

At this point, Toronto’s front office should be prioritizing adding more high-leverage relievers, preferably those that offer swing-and-miss stuff. A bonus would be to improve the remaining roster by the trade deadline.

Taking a lucrative step by achieving a generation superstar would be a bold move. It will generate a lot of buzz among the fan base, as it should. But at the end of the day, if that doesn’t improve your chances of winning the championship, what’s the point?

The Blue Jays are now determined to win, and rightly so. Their origins include Bo Bichet, Teoscar Hernández, Springer, Guerrero, Manoah, Berios, Gaussman and others. They are currently made to win.

But as unfortunate as it is, acquiring Ohtani – or Soto – won’t be enough to put them on top of this season’s World Series win.

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