Eric Chavez Joining the Toronto Blue Jays Makes Perfect Sense

Devon TeepleAnalyst IJanuary 14, 2011

Eric Chavez is nowhere near the player he was in his heyday with the Oakland Athletics, but this former Gold Glover from Cali could add the “intangibles” to a young Toronto Blue Jays infield. 

Reports are surfacing that Chavez has been working out in Arizona and his health appears to be as good as it has been in years. 

I have my doubts that Chavez would be willing to become a Jay in what would obviously be a limited role, yet his experience and knowledge is something every player in their infield could benefit from, especially the newbies joining the club in spring training. 

Third base is obviously up for grabs.  The question remains whether the job is Edwin Encarnacion’s to lose or if he will be splitting time with Jose Bautista. 

The hot corner is another spot that will eventually become home for Yunel Escobar, Aaron Hill or Brett Lawrie. 

Out of those three, Escobar is the player most likely to remain at his position.  The inclusion of Lawrie is quite possibly the first sign of Hill’s departure from second base. 

Encarnacion is never going to be the club’s everyday corner-man.  In my estimation, he is taking the hand he was dealt and running with it.  If Lawrie is as good as he says he is, his bat will propel him into the starting lineup regardless of the problems his glove could produce. 

If Hill can regain his 30-homerun swing from two seasons ago, there is nothing stopping him from manning third while Lawrie hones his craft. 

This is exactly where Chavez comes in.  What better person to tutor a young infield that will showcase a new first baseman in Adam Lind?

Every player one day will realize his best years are behind him, and no matter how much strength Chavez has regained in his back and shoulder, his new role will be that of a teacher to his younger mates. 

If indeed Chavez becomes a viable option for the Jays, his contract, one that was paying him in the tens of millions, will obviously (I hope drastically) be reduced to fit the role he is expected to play. 

To all the Jays fans, Chavez in a Jay’s uniform does fit, and the old-school Ryan Klesko/Jason Giambi drop-and-lift swing seems mighty inviting for short porch located at 1 Blue Jays Way.

Devon is the founder of The GM’s Perspective