- George Springer has agreed to a six-year $150M deal with the Toronto Blue Jays.
- Springer was the spark plug of the Houston Astros offense from the lead-off spot and was the 2017 World Series MVP.
- The Blue Jays are 12th in the current odds to win the 2021 World Series at +2800.
The Toronto Blue Jays and outfielder George Springer have agreed to a six year-deal worth $150M. The deal is not yet official and has not been confirmed by Toronto pending a physical exam. Springer is headed to the Blue Jays’ training camp facility in Dunedin, Florida to get the physical test. If all goes well according to plan, Toronto will get the star it has been looking for since the start of winter.
George Springer and the Toronto Blue Jays are in agreement on a deal, sources familiar with the situation tell @JeffPassan. pic.twitter.com/Z6VfrPDgLI
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 20, 2021
The deal is the largest ever contract given in the history of the Toronto Blue Jays. The only other $100M contract in franchise history was Vernon Wells’ $126M extension in 2006.
Springer was one of the biggest names in the free agent market and he Toronto’s top free agent target throughout the offseason. Although they tried to pursue other notable free agents, the road led back to the 31-year old center fielder. If this deal comes to fruition, it will not only make the Blue Jays a better team, it instantly puts the franchise in a win-now mode.
2017 World Series MVP
11/1/17 The Astros beat the Dodgers 5-1 at Dodger Stadium in Game 7 and become World Series Champions for the first time in franchise history. George Springer was named the 2017 World Series MVP (.379, 5 HR, 7 RBI). This was the first game ever played by Houston in November. pic.twitter.com/6KNZ4WU8KV
— Mike Acosta (@AstrosTalk) November 2, 2018
Springer was the sparkplug of the Houston Astros’ offense at the leadoff spot. He batted at .379 with five home runs and 7 RBIs in the 2017 World Series and led the Astros to a 5-1 Game 7 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodgers Stadium. That game marked the first time in Astros’ history that the team played in November and made the Astros World Series champions for the first time.
While some of his teammates have struggled since the 2017 sign-stealing fiasco, Springer has continued to put up big numbers. Before the pandemic-shorterned 2020 season, Springer hit at least 20 home runs in five of six season. Last season, he had 14 dingers while hitting .265 with 32 RBIs in 51 games played while lowering his strikeout rate to a career-best 17.1%.
But he has been at his best during big moments. Springer is tied for 4th all-time with 19 career playoff homers. He also ranks 6th overall in slugging percentage at .546, 7th in extra-base hits with 34 and tied for 14th in runs scored with 43. With a career on-base percentage of .361 and the power to hit 40 home runs in a full season, Springer has the ability to change the complexion of a game with one swing of a bat while hitting near the top of the order.
Fits Well With Toronto’s Lineup
DJ LeMahieu & George Springer are among the free agents who would fit really well in Toronto. Up @Sportsnet, a player-by-player look at how the top of this year’s class would work on the #BlueJays‘ roster https://t.co/SBejihGRcw
— Ben Nicholson-Smith (@bnicholsonsmith) November 17, 2020
While the Blue Jays had coveted a star centerfielder for quite some time now, Toronto pursued Springer because he fits well with Toronto’s lineup. Springer won a World Series title with the Astros in 2017 and he brings that championship experience to a young team that is looking to get there. He has played in 63 postseason games and has a playoff batting average of .269 with 19 home runs and an OPS of .895.
Defensively, Springer is a very solid everyday centerfielder but he could easily slide to either of the corner outfield spots, if needed. Toronto center fielders were a minus-7 in defensive runs saved in 2020, which was tied for 26th overall in MLB. Springer accounted for 6 defensive runs saved last season, which put him in a tie for 5th best in his position.
Toronto’s outfield was very productive offensively in 2020 as they accounted for a total of 40 home runs. The only outfield with more home runs than the Blue Jays last season was the eventual World Series champions L.A. Dodgers who had 50. Toronto is currently just 12th in the oddboard to win the 2021 World Series at +2800 at SportsBetting.ag. But with George Springer’s addition, they have the potential to be one of the surprise teams in 2021.