Earlier today, Jon Jay did something terrible to Jake Arrieta. He left him all alone in the free-agent wilderness:
— Kansas City Royals (@Royals) March 6, 2018
And it’s cold out there.
Jon Jay becomes the latest member of the 2017 Chicago Cub to sign a deal this offseason, which means Jake Arrieta is the only member of that team to linger in free agency (assuming you don’t count Brett Anderson, who didn’t make it with the team the whole year, or John Lackey, who appears to be retiring).
According to Rustin Dodd of The Athletic, the deal comes with a $3 million guarantee and as much as $1.5 million in incentives (which are triggered with just 250 trips to the plate). That’s a pretty easy threshold to hit, even in a complementary role, but Jay is expected to get a shot at an everyday position anyway. Frankly, at this point in the offseason and with this market, that’s not that bad of a deal for Jay.
And while Jay may have only been with the Cubs for one season, he did slash .296/.374/.374 (101 wRC+) over 141 games, while playing all three outfield positions and taking a healthy chunk of the leadoff at-bats down the stretch.
He may not have ever been a you’ll-remember-him-forever fan favorite (relative to other short-term Cubs), but he was definitely a great guy to have on the team, and someone whose versatility, approach, and defense in the outfield will probably be missed.
For example, remember this gem (volume on):
"That ball hit in the gap and nobody's gonna get that one." pic.twitter.com/0SA6oVSVzx
— Kevin Marchina (@kg_holler) July 27, 2017
That’s a 2017 instant classic.
Farewell, Jon Jay. Thank you for leading off when no one else would, and being an all-around swell member of the 2017 division-winning Chicago Cubs.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) March 6, 2018