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Blue Jays betting on a bounce back year for Shaw

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TORONTO — The Toronto Blue Jays are betting a Travis Shaw bounce back is the solution to their first base problem.

With no obvious internal answer and the club committed to Vladimir Guerrero Jr. at third base next season, the Jays agreed to terms with Shaw on a one-year, $4 million contract Sunday, according to a source.

The deal is pending a physical and also includes performance bonuses for plate appearances that could earn Shaw an additional $675,000.

Coming off the worst season of his career, one that forced the Milwaukee Brewers to non-tender the 29-year-old infielder earlier this month rather than pay him around $5 million in salary for 2020, the Blue Jays believe Shaw is closer to the 30-homer left-handed bat he was in 2017 and 2018 than one of the worst hitters in baseball, which is exactly what he was this past season.

There’s no getting around the fact Shaw was bad — really bad — in 2019, slashing just .157/.281/.270 with seven home runs in 270 trips to the plate, output that earned the five-year veteran a pair of trips to Triple-A.

But prior to cratering in his age-29 season, Shaw had been worth a total of 7.1 fWAR — 3.5 in ’17 and 3.6 in ’18 — and had posted back-to-back........