2017 Blue Jays Top Prospects Month in Review: April

 

With April in the rearview mirror, it’s time to review how JFtC Top Blue Jays Prospects have fared over the month of 2017

 

 

The Toronto Blue Jays 2017 minor league season has begun and we thought we’d check in on our 2017 Top Prospects List to see how they’ve fared in the early goings.

 

#1- Vladimir Guerrero Jr

The Blue Jays top prospect hasn’t disappointed. Vlad is showing power, patience, and maturity not seen in many prospects his age. Guerrero is hitting .329 with 6 doubles, 4 home runs, 15 walks and 13 strikeouts.  Lansing has a powerful lineup which must help lighten the burden Guerrero to perform.

 

Last 10 Days

.421BA, 8H, 2B, 2HR, 7RBI, 3BB, 2K, 2SB and .368ISO

 

#2- Anthony Alford

New Hampshire’s dynamic center fielder exploded out of the gates hitting everything in site. Alford’s power didn’t show up until the 2nd or 3rd week of the season. During this stretch, he displayed the speed and power blend that was missing for much of the 2016 season. He has cooled off considerably over the past 2 weeks but continues to carry a solid .303 batting average with 5 doubles, 2 home runs, and 9 runs batted in.

 

Last 10 Days

.111BA, 2-2B, 2RBI, 2BB, 13K, and .056ISO

 

#3- Rowdy Tellez

After a slow start that saw Tellez batting .145 on May 26th, the power-hitting 1st baseman is getting warm. Despite his early season struggles, Tellez maintained his approach and didn’t seem to be pressing at the plate. Rowdy is hitting just .218 with 2 doubles, 3 HR, and 8 RBI but he’s walked 12 times and struck out 20 times. With Justin Smoak and Kendrys Morales producing in Toronto, Rowdy Tellez can take his time figuring out Triple-A pitching

 

Last 10 Days

.321, 9H, 2-2B, HR, 4RBI, 3BB, 7K and .179ISO

 

#4- Sean Reid-Foley

April was not kind to the Blue Jays top pitching prospect. SRF is getting in trouble early, wreaking havoc on his pitch count. This has seen him get the hook early in the game. The Fisher Cats pitcher lasted just 1.2IP in his first two starts, he’s lasted 3 IP twice, and 5 IP just once in 6 starts. SRF has allowed 22 hits (.338 opp BA) and 14 walks in 15 innings while striking out 16.

 

Overall

1-3, 7.80 ERA 2.40 WHIP

 

#5- Richard Urena

April was not kind to Toronto’s shortstop of the future. Urena is hitting just .202 with 4 doubles, a home run and 7 runs batted in. He has shown more plate discipline drawing 11 walks and striking out 23 times. However, he hasn’t looked comfortable at the plate.

 

Last 10 Days

.241BA, 7H, 2-2B, HR, 5 RBI, 3BB, 5K, and .172ISO

 

#6- Conner Greene

Greene is in his 2nd season with the Double-A Fisher Cats and looking much better. Greene appears to be commanding the strike zone better than last year with an increase in strikeouts (7.39 K/9 vs 6.29 K/9) while maintaining a 4.33 BB/9. His inflated BB/9 is thanks to 9 walks over his first two starts. He has walked just 8 over his last 4 starts, spanning 26 innings. This works out to be roughly 2.7 BB/9.  Greene looks ready to make the next step, plus he touched 102 mph on the radar gun according to Chris Ryan.

 

 

Overall

1-2, 3.57 ERA with 17BB/29K and 1.19 WHIP

 

#7- Bo Bichette

Bichette has benefited from hitting in Lansing’s potent lineup, scoring the 2nd most runs in the Blue Jays’ farm system (21). The 19-yr-old Bichette has spent more of the month playing shortstop but has played 3 games at 2nd. Bo has reached base in every game but two, thanks to a consistent approach that has allowed him to hit .361 with 9 doubles, a triple, 3 homers, and 17 RBI with 12 walks and 18 strikeouts.

 

Last 10 Days

.344BA, 11H, 4-2B, 3B, 2HR, 6RBI, 2BB, 8K, SB, and .375ISO

 

#8- T.J. Zeuch

Last year’s 1st round pick started the year with the Advanced-A Dunedin Blue Jays. After two short outings lasting just 1 IP and 4 IP, Zeuch has pitched into or finishing 6 frames. The 21-yr-old right-hander is showing the ability to finish batters (7.07 K/9) while limiting the number of free passes he’s allowed.  Opponents are hitting just .219 off him and he’s induced ground balls at a rate of 3.27 GO/AO.

 

Overall

2-1, 2.25 ERA with 7BB/22K and 1.07 WHIP

 

#9- Harold Ramirez

The 22-yr-old Ramirez had a disappointing April, holding a .103 batting on April 18th. Since then Ramirez has seen his batting average climb to .183. Ramirez has struggled to sustain any success. He has 3-multi-hit games and even carried a 4-game hit streak; unfortunately, there’s been too many hitless nights. Overall, Ramirez has hit .191 with 3 doubles, a triple and a homerun, 5 runs batted in, 4 walks and 12 strikeouts.

 

Last 10 Days

.167BA, 4H, 2B, RBI, 2BB, K, and .042

 

#10- Lourdes Gurriel Jr

Not much to report of Lourdes. Thanks to injury, Gurriel has managed just 2 at-bats so far.

 

#11- Jonathan Harris

The former 2015 1st rounder pick has struggled with the Fisher Cats. The 23-yr-old main problems have come from the long ball, allowing 6 home runs combined with 33 hits allowed in 26.1 IP. This combination never ends well. Harris allowed 6 runs in his last start (May 2nd) after allowing 4, 2, and 3 in the three starts prior.

 

Overall

1-2, 7.18 ERA with 9BB/23K and 1.59 WHIP

 

#12- Reese McGuire

The New Hampshire Fisher Cats catcher had 3 multi-hit games but is still going hitless far too often. It looked as though the 22-yr-old was set to have a breakout year, hitting 2 home runs in his first 6 games; unfortunately, he managed just one extra base hit over his next 10 games, striking out 8 times and collecting hits in just three games during that stretch. McGuire exited the game on May 2nd and is currently on the 7-Day DL.

 

Last 10 Days

.286 4H, RBI, 2BB, 5K, SB, and .000 ISO

 

#13- Justin Maese

The 20-yr-old Lugnuts starter has some decent starts and some not so decent starts under his belt. He’s grinding through starts, inducing groundball (55.5%) and taking advantage of a favorable .348 BABIP. Maese’s walk numbers are up (3.60 BB/9) and strikeout numbers are down (6.43 K/9) but his 3.26 FIP suggests brighter days ahead.

 

Overall

3-2, 4.89 ERA with 14BB/25K and a 1.57 WHIP

 

#14- Max Pentecost

On fire.

Pentecost is doing it all at the plate and behind it for the Dunedin Blue Jays. Pentecost is up to 7 home runs and has 22 RBI while batting .344. Max has hit safely in 19 of his 21 games, having his 18 game hit streak snapped on May 6th. He has 9 multi-hit games and 6 multi-RBI games. Maybe more important than what he’s done at the plate is the fact Pentecost has started catching games again. The Jays will continue to take it slow with their promising Pentecost.

 

Last 10 Days

.351 BA, 13H, 2-2B, 2HR, 6RBI, 2BB, 13K and .216 ISO

 

#15- Angel Perdomo

The 6-foot-6 left-handed pitcher has looked okay early for the D-Jays. Not great but not terrible either. In 6 starts, he hasn’t allowed more than 2 runs in 4 starts. He’s been knocked out of the game after 4 IP twice, pitching into or finishing the 6th twice. Perdomo’s K/9 (7.58) and BB/9 (4.55) are trending the wrong way when compared to his 2016 number. The flyball pitcher has already allowed 7 long flys in 29.2 IP compared to 4 in 127.0 IP in 2016.

 

Overall

2-2, 3.94 ERA with 15BB/25K and 1.72 WHIP

 

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

 

Cavan Biggio– The 22-yr-old 2nd baseman has not looked out of place in Dunedin. He hasn’t had as much success as fellow draft mate Bo Bichette but Biggio has done well. He is striking out far too much with 33 K in 27 games to go along with a .271 batting average, 5 doubles, a triple and a HR.

 

Francisco Rios– The Fisher Cats starter cruised through his first 5 starts, posting a record of 3-2 and a 1.91 ERA. Rios was rocked in his May 7th start, walking 6 batters, allowing 8 runs on 7 hits. Despite a solid record of 3-3 and 3.86 ERA, Rios has a poor BB/K ratio (thanks to his last start) of 14/20 and is giving up too many hits (37 in 32.2 IP).

 

Ryan Borucki– The 23-yr-old lefty has yet to find his groove. He owns a 0-1 record and 5.26 ERA over 6 starts. After lasting 5 innings in his first 3 starts, Borucki has failed to pitch out of the 4th in his last 3 outings. Ryan is racking up the strikeouts (31 in 25.2IP) while limiting walks (8 BB). Unfortunately, an ugly 43.9 LOB% has allowed 20 runs (15 ER) to score.

 

 

 

*Featured Image Credit: slgckgc. UNDER CC BY-SA 2.0

 

 

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Lover of all things Toronto Blue Jays. Blue Jays MiLB fanatic. I strive for average while stumbling onto above average. Rogers isn’t cheap. Baseball is a business. Your right, but I’m more right.

Ryan Mueller

Lover of all things Toronto Blue Jays. Blue Jays MiLB fanatic. I strive for average while stumbling onto above average. Rogers isn’t cheap. Baseball is a business. Your right, but I’m more right.