The Toronto Blue Jays re-signed centerfielder Kevin Kiermaier to a one-year, $10.5 million deal that keeps the team's 2023 outfield intact for 2024.
Kiermaier turns 34 in April of 2024 and will enter his 12th MLB season and his second season in Toronto after 10 with the Tampa Bay Rays.
Primarily known for his fielding, he committed just five errors over 981.1 innings in centerfield in 2023.
In his first season with the Blue Jays, Kiermaier played in 129 games, batted .265 with a .322 on-base percentage, hit eight home runs, and scored 58 runs with 36 RBI.
Kiermaier finished fourth on the team in WAR last year with 3.9, behind only Bo Bichette, Matt Chapman, and Daulton Varsho.
Chapman, a third-baseman, and second-baseman Whit Merrifield are both free agents. The Blue Jays will now either turn their attention to re-signing those players or replacing them.
In terms of age and 2023 WAR, Chapman and Merrifield are likely the best options for any team looking for a third- or second-baseman. Luckily for Toronto, they have three infield prospects - Orelvis Martinez, Addison Barger, and Leo Jimenez - ranked in the club's top 10 prospects and set to arrive in 2024, according to MLB.com's prospect rankings.
Bringing back Kiermaier allows the Blue Jays - who have a strong collection of young hitters with Varsho, Bichette, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Alejandro Kirk all 27 or younger - to hold onto an experienced player while the team scouts for its centerfielder of the future.
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