This past January, the Blue Jays went out and acquired Yangervis Solarte to provide some much needed depth for their injury plagued infield.
It was considered a necessary move at the time. Bringing in a player capable of starting on many teams, who would act as a back-up in case anything were to happen to either Josh Donaldson or Devon Travis. So when Donaldson went down to injury almost immediately, it was Solarte who took over the regular duties at 3rd base. Something he did a fine job of, especially in the first half of the season.
As well as Solarte played early on this year, his performance has slipped considerably of late. Particularly after the July 26 trade that saw J.A. Happ go to New York in exchange for Billy McKinney and Brandon Drury. Drury, a player much like Solarte (except younger and more athletic), appears to be who the Blue Jays now have pegged to be their utility infielder of the future. After such a move, Solarte could see the writing on the wall and that his time in Toronto was likely coming to a close.
In the 16 games that Solarte’s played since the trade with the Yankees, he has a brutal slash line of .235/.278/.235 (O HR, 1 RBI). His heart simply isn’t in it anymore. Obviously he has a job to do and is getting paid handsomely to do so. But at the same time, just eight short months ago he was brought in to play an important role on this ball club, and already the Blue Jays are looking to go in a different direction.
With so many big league level infielders, some decent players will need to be moved this winter. Unfortunately for Solarte, he just happens to be one of those expendable players. And with a $750 K buyout vs a $5.5 million team option in 2019, it’s more than likely the Blue Jays simply buyout Solarte to alleviate some of this backlog of infielders.