Undrafted reliever Andrew Case posted solid numbers in 2017. He did so will moving up three minor league levels of the Toronto Blue Jays
Prior to the 2016 season, New Brunswick-born Andrew Case received a 50 game suspension for failing to attend a mandatory drug test. Andrew Case admitted to screwing up with scheduling and money which resulted in him missing the appointment.
The non-drafted reliever served his suspension and performed exceptionally well upon his return. In 22 games with the A-Ball Lansing Lugnuts Case closed out 10-of-11 saves in 22 appearances. He also posted a record of 0-2 with a 2.28 ERA while striking out 19 batters over 23.2IP.
With a successful season in Lansing on his resume, Andrew Case took his sinker/slider combo to Advanced-A Dunedin Blue Jays to start the 2017 season.
The 24-yr-old righty didn’t get off to the best starts in Dunedin, posting a 1-1 record with a 5.52 ERA in 11 April appearances. He was a perfect 2-for-2 in save situations.
Prior to getting promoted to New Hampshire on May 15th the D-Jays closer posted a record of 2-0 and 3.38 ERA while converting 2-of-3 saves.
Case had two bad outings, allowing 4 runs (April 12th) and 3 runs (May 2nd) in a pair of one-inning appearances. Despite posting an impressive 2.17 GO/AO in April and 1.50 GO/AO in May, Case surrendered 3 longballs in 18.1IP over 14 appearances (1.47 HR/9).
Andrew Case made his Double-A debut on May 18th in the 5th inning needing just 14 pitches to get threw 1.1 innings against the Trenton Thunder.
In five May appearances, the 6-foot-2 reliever posted a record of 3-0 and 0.87 ERA while holding opponents to a .158 batting average over 10.1 IP. Case earned wins in three consecutive appearances to close out the month.
Case made 10 appearances in June converting all 3 save opportunities he was faced with. He continued to get outs despite not being overly dominant. He posted a 1-0 record and 2.38 ERA but walked 4 and struck out 5 in 11.1 IP. Opponents posted a .256 BA and .645 OPS while Case owned a .270 BABIP.
On July 19th, the New Brunswick native received another promotion, heading to Triple-A to join the Buffalo Bisons. Before heading to the International League, Case converted 2 saves while not allowing any runs in 6 appearances.
Between June 13th and July 17th, Andrew Case allowed one run over 13 appearances while throwing 7 hitless innings during that span.
Andrew Case’s time in Triple-A was short lived as he posted a 5.87 ERA, blowing his only save opportunity, and he served up 2 HR over 4 appearances.
The former New Hampshire closer made three 2 inning and one 1 inning appearances, but only saw one scoreless appearance.
Fisher Cats Part 2
In his return, Case dominated the Eastern League during the final month of the season with a 2.53 ERA over 10.2IP and no record. He converted 3-of-5 saves. He finished the season with 4 scoreless appearances.
Case struck out 43 batters in 66.0 IP over three levels. According to Fangraphs, Case saw his K/9 fall as he ascended through the system, going from 8.35 to 5.18 to 3.52. He also saw his BB/9 go in the wrong direction upon each promotion. His BB/9 went from 1.47 to 2.25 to 3.52.
Andrew posted his best LOB% (86%), FIP (3.23), WHIP (1.03), and AVG (.208) with the Fisher Cats.
Andrew Case played in the Austrailian Baseball League this past offseason and now will be heading to the Arizona Fall League this year; a busy guy.
Case is unlikely to be added to the 40-man roster before the start of next spring but will be given a long look. I expect Andrew to start the year with the Buffalo Bisons, solidifying the Triple-A bullpen, and adding yet more bullpen depth to the Blue Jays’ farm system. The righty reliever will have better luck in Buffalo next season than he did in 2017 but has a number of arms to leapfrog over before making his Toronto debut.
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