The AL East has been a massacre throughout the 2022 MLB season with all 5 groups within the division over .500 a day after the commerce deadline. The New York Yankees are main the pack with the most effective report within the American League, however the Toronto Blue Jays are hanging powerful in second place with a report with that might be adequate to steer two divisions throughout baseball.
The Blue Jays tried to load up on the commerce deadline with a number of acquisitions. Their greatest addition was Whit Merrifield, the 33-year-old second baseman they acquired from the Royals for pitcher Max Castillo and infielder Samad Taylor. Merrifield has an exquisite resume: he led baseball in hits in 2018 and 2019, he’s led the league in steals three completely different instances, and he has a status as a strong defender. Whereas he’s struggled on the plate this 12 months with a .240/.290/.352 slash line, including Merrifield is the kind of transfer Toronto wanted to doubtlessly make a deep playoff run.
There’s just one drawback. Merrifield will not be vaccinated in opposition to Covid, and Canada requires everybody who enters the nation to be vaccinated. Thus far, Merrifield nonetheless hasn’t indicated he’ll get vaccinated so he can play in house video games. The Blue Jays mentioned the group will go away the choice as much as him.
As for Whit Merrifield, John Schneider says, “nothing new,” re vax standing. “Clearly we all know he wasn’t there in Toronto, however completely as much as him. And I am certain that he is had conversations along with his household and different folks. So, , we’re leaving that call as much as him.”
— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) August 3, 2022
When the Royals performed the Blue Jays in Toronto final month, Merrifield was considered one of 10 gamers on the workforce to not journey with the membership as a result of he wasn’t vaccinated. Merrifield did beforehand say he would take into account getting vaccinated if it meant he might play within the playoffs. The Blue Jays are presently in postseason place by main the Wild Card race.
Would the Blue Jays actually commerce for Merrifield — and quit a superb arm in Castillo to do it — with out figuring out if he’d get vaccinated? A number of insiders hinted on the time of the deal that Merrifield should have modified his thoughts. It doesn’t sound prefer it up to now.
Merrifield solely must look to Andrew Wiggins to see an instance of an athlete getting the vaccine and thriving. Wiggins was initially hesitant to get the required vaccine to play for the Golden State Warriors final season. He finally obtained it, and performed a important function within the Warriors’ run to the 2022 NBA championship.
Is Whit Merrifield subsequent? The 1st step is getting the vaccine. He’s undoubtedly not going to be a part of a playoff run in Toronto with out getting that far.