Surprising Team Revealed As One Of The Serious Suitors For Bogaerts

It's apparent now that the Boston Red Sox weren't truly serious about retaining Xander Bogaerts this offseason. They were outbid by the San Diego Padres by about $100M for his services. 

But according to Bogaerts' agent Scott Boras, there were three other teams that were also "really after him," as he put it. And those three were the Minnesota Twins (who thought they were losing Carlos Correa), the Chicago Cubs (who wound up signing another free agent shortstop, Dansby Swanson), and.... the Toronto Blue Jays. Huh?

This latest revelation probably won't sit too well with Bo Bichette, the Jays' current star shortstop. Tensions between the sides are already building after the team and Bichette came in father apart than any other major leaguer in exchanging salary arbitration numbers for 2023 this weekend. 

It's assumed that, had they signed Bogaerts, he would have been installed at shortstop, where his defense is far superior to Bichette's, with the incumbent sliding over to second base. Bo has long insisted that he's a shortstop and wasn't interested in switching positions, but that would have been a hard argument to make if Bogaerts was on board.

The former Red Sox shortstop was a finalist for the Gold Glove award in 2022, while Bichette finished dead last in the majors for shortstops in 2022, with a minus-16 Defensive Runs Saved, a full 10 runs worse than the second-worst SS. Similarly, in Outs Above Average, he was near the bottom in MLB among shortstops.

Based on this news that the Jays were "all in" on trying woo Bogaerts, it's apparent they might be growing tired of Bichette's defensive foibles. And they will certainly bring those metrics with them into the arbitration hearing, should the two sides not come to an agreement before then. 

Photo: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports