Carlos Correa is a free agent again.
According to ESPN, the 28-year-old All-Star will exercise the opt-out clause in his contract with the Minnesota Twins and will hit the open market for the second consecutive winter.
Last year, Correa was one name in a huge list of star infielders who hit free agency at the same time, including Marcus Semien, Corey Seager, Javier Baez, and Trevor Story. While those four aforementioned players signed long-term contracts, Correa opted to ink a short-term deal with the Twins with the option that he could soon test the market again when there weren’t as many quality names available at the same position.
Correa’s deal with the Twins was worth $35 million annually for three years with an opt-out after the first and second seasons. He slashed a .291/.366/.467 line with the Twins in 2022 and was worth 5.4 wins above replacement, according to Baseball-Reference. It wasn’t as good as his 2021 season with the Astros in which he was worth 7.1 wins and finished fifth in AL MVP voting, but Correa’s competition in free agency is lighter this time around, as the other two big names out there are Trea Turner and Dansby Swanson.
There was some talk last off-season during the dog days of winter that the Blue Jays could sign Correa to fill the hole in the infield and lineup left by Semien’s departure but the team wound up trading for Matt Chapman instead.
Given where the Blue Jays are at right now with a tight budget and multiple big salaries set to be handed out in arbitration, it’s very difficult to imagine they’d be in the mix for Correa. The only avenue in which that would happen is if the team traded Bo Bichette to address another area of need on the roster, but it seems unlikely that the Blue Jays would move on from their drafted-and-developed shortstop when he’s only at his first go-around at arbitration.