Jays From the Couch continues our Toronto Blue Jays 2017 Top Prospects list with a look at the number 14 prospect Max Pentecost.
It’s that time of year again! We’re counting down our Toronto Blue Jays Top Prospects for 2017. We’ve selected our Top 15 and will be profiling each one. You are bound to find many of these lists in your travels, which makes for great conversation. The basis for rankings varies even more than the number of lists you’ll find. Some prefer to look at how close to “big league ready” a prospect is, while others look at “stuff” or “tools”. To construct our list, we have scoured over scouting reports, numbers and a lot more to finalize our 2017 Top Prospects list. Feel free to weigh in on each selection in the comment section! It’s part of the fun!
We’ve already begun our 2017 list with our Honorable Mentions and #15- Angel Perdomo.
Name: Max Pentecost
Born: March 10th, 1993
Drafted: 1st Round, 11th Overall by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2014 Draft
Drafted 11th overall in 2014 by Toronto out of Kennesaw State, Max Pentecost was seen as the next great Blue Jays catcher. He came in as the guy who could smash the baseball and play solid defense behind the plate. His comparable was actually Russell Martin. In his final season with Kennesaw State, Pentecost batted .422 with 9 HR, 61 RBI’s, OBP of .482 and a SLG% of .627 in 64 games. Needless to say he was a game changer offensively.
During his first season in the Blue Jays organization Pentecost played 25 games, was batting .324 with 12 RBI’s and had an OPS of .749. It was a great start for the future Blue Jays catcher. From there, as most of us know, came shoulder issues and a series of surgeries making Pentecost lose the rest of 2014 and all of the 2015 season. It took three surgeries to finally solve the shoulder issues but he was finally back for the 2016 season. With a professional season of more than 25 games under his belt, Pentecost showed the promise the Jays were looking for when they drafted him. After a solid season offensively Pentecost is number 14 this year in our Top 15 Prospects list.
Limited to DH duties this year in the minor leagues, Pentecost showed huge promise offensively in 2016. Starting the season with Lansing Pentecost had a slash line of .314/.375/.490 in 62 games. His strong offensive game led to a call to high-A Dunedin where he played 12 games to finish the season. Though there was a drop off in his production, this was too small of a sample size to deem him not ready for Dunedin. In total Pentecost played a total of 74 games last season, which is way better then his previous high of 25 in 2014. We saw the hitting scouts believed he would bring to the table as he finished the year with a slash line of .302/.361/.468 to go along with 10 HR, 41 RBI’s and an OPS of .847.
Outlook for 2017
Expect Pentecost to start in the same place he finished the season, Dunedin. Assuming Pentecost can get back to fielding a position, there’s a good chance he jumps to AA during the 2017 season. If all goes well we could see a jump to AAA by season’s end, depending on the performance of guys ahead of him, like Reese McGuire. Look for the same hitting ability Pentecost produced in 2016 but remember he is still behind in his reps compared to his fellow teammates drafted in 2014.
His defensive game may take time to improve but he has been working on catching drills this past year that didn’t involve throwing. Also look for Pentecost to see some time at first base this season as the Jays may look for an alternative positions for him to play. Regardless of position, look for Pentecost to continue to prove why he will produce at the big league level both offensively and defensively.
ETA: 2018 at the earliest.
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