The Toronto Blue Jays have begun to address their biggest 2021 weakness.
The Blue Jays have agreed to a contract with free-agent reliever Yimi García, per MLB Network's Jon Morosi. The deal was first reported by former big-leaguer Carlos Baerga, on Instagram. The deal is a two-year, $11 million deal plus a club option, per TSN's Scott Mitchell, but the move has not yet been confirmed by the club.
García posted a 4.21 ERA between the Miami Marlins and Houston Astros last year, recording 15 saves in Miami before he was traded to the American League champions. He reportedly joins the Blue Jays after a seven-year big league career, owning a career 3.6 ERA, 4.14 FIP, and striking out 245 batters for three MLB teams.
García posted a 3.47 ERA with Miami before the 2021 trade deadline, striking out 8.7 batters per nine, before he was flipped to the Astros for a pair of prospects. The reliever's strikeout rates improved in Houston, but his ERA after the transaction was 5.48. García's expected stats (xBA, xERA) jumped in 2021 due to higher hard-hit rates, but García posted expected batting averages below .200 and expected ERAs below 3.00 in 2019 and 2020.
García has a high-90s fastball with elite spin rates and flashes slider, curveball, and changeup secondary offerings. Throwing as a righty out of a three-quarters arm slot, he brings a new look to a Toronto bullpen that improved after the additions of Adam Cimber and Trevor Richards during the 2021 season. With Cimber and Richards still under team control, García joins a Toronto stable that also includes Jordan Romano and Tim Mayza.
H/T Jon Morosi, Scott Mitchell