4. Troy Tulowitzki
Troy Tulowitzki became an American Leaguer just last season, coming over from Colorado to Toronto in a blockbuster deal that sent the now-embattled Jose Reyes out of Canada. What the Blue Jays got for taking on Tulo’s $98 million in payroll was an extremely talented player on both sides of the ball. While his gaudy .885 career OPS was due in large part to his .951 OPS at the hitter-friendly Coors Field in Colorado, Tulo also excelled defensively. The Blue Jays shortstop is the active leader in Total Zone runs with 102, placing third in the American League last year with 11, despite only playing 41 games in the AL.
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The question for Tulowitzki is whether he can stay on the field. He has not managed to play more than 140 games in a season since 2011. Last season, he cracked his shoulder blade in a collision with centerfielder Kevin Pillar which kept him out three weeks in September and hampered him for the postseason.
In my estimation, his checkered injury history as well as his unfamiliarity with the American League and its pitchers pushes him down to number 4 for me. Though he had just a career-low .659 OPS in 41 games in Toronto, expect him to be closer to his career norms in the hitting department. Tulo is 31 now, so will these new surroundings lead to a career resurgence after some tough years?
The Red Sox visit Toronto for the first time in 2016 in their season-opening road trip, April 8-10. The Blue Jays make their first 2016 trip to Fenway a week later, April 15-17
Next: 5. Starlin Castro