All-star third baseman Matt Chapman traded to Blue Jays from Athletics

All-star third baseman Matt Chapman traded to Blue Jays from Athletics
Oakland Athletics second baseman Matt Chapman, right, throws to first after forcing Seattle Mariners' Jake Fraley (28) at second during the fifth inning of a baseball game in Seattle, Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Ted S. Warren

The Toronto Blue Jays are still loading up for a run at the post-season.

Matt Chapman was acquired by Toronto in a trade with the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday, the Blue Jays have confirmed. Shortstop Kevin Smith, right-handed pitcher Gunnar Hoglund, left-handed starter Zach Logue and left-handed reliever Kirby Snead were sent to Oakland in exchange for the all-star third baseman.

Manager Charlie Montoyo said the Blue Jays were excited when news of the trade broke in their spring training clubhouse.

“Our defence just got a lot better,” said Montoyo. “He’s one of the best third basemen I’ve ever seen in the big leagues and I’m really happy to have him.

“I’m also happy for the kids that got traded. When you get traded for somebody that that’s good it’s also good for you.”

The 28-year-old Chapman had a .210 batting average and 27 home runs for the Athletics last season while earning his third Golden Glove. He also won a Platinum Glove as the best defensive player in the American League – regardless of position – in 2018 and 2019.

Montoyo said that adding Chapman’s glove to the left side of the field will help Toronto climb up the AL East standings.

“I mean that’s how you win in the big leagues: pitching and defence,” said Montoyo. “It’s tough to hit all the time so to win you need pitching and defence and we really just got better.”

Santiago Espinal, who will likely share second base with Cavan Biggio this season, said he was eager to learn from Chapman.

“When that trade happened, everybody was happy,” said Espinal, gesturing around the Blue Jays’ expansive spring training clubhouse. “He’s going to be able to help us, especially us young guys.

“He’s already got that Gold Glove and he got a Platinum Glove too, so for us to have him and learn from him I think is a blessing.”

The move came a day after Toronto general manager Ross Atkins said that adding a new position player was a priority.

Atkins said he feels the Blue Jays have “closed the gap” in the competitive American League East but he’s always looking to make his club better.

“I think the most obvious way to do that is in our infield and complementing it somehow,” said Atkins.

Before the Chapman trade it was rumoured that the Blue Jays were pursuing free agents like Canadian first baseman Freddie Freeman and shortstop Carlos Correa.


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