Blue Jays: Cal Stevenson, hard to keep off the bases

Join Jays From the Couch in highlighting one of the Blue Jays 2018 Draftee early success stories, Cal Stevenson.

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Cal Stevenson was selected in the 10th round out of Arizona by the Toronto Blue Jays in this season’s Draft. Stevenson played two seasons with the Wildcats, demonstrating the ability to get on-base, hit for average, and steal in 106 games.

Despite suffering a hand injury, hit by pitch, and a stomach alignment in his senior year, Cal Stevenson managed to bat .293 with a .416 OBP, three doubles, 6 triples, and a 1-HR in 2018.

 

The 5-foot-10 outfielder/on-base machine received praise form Wildcats coach Jay Johnson who described Stevenson as a competitor and warrior. His former coach spoke highly about Stevenson’s commitment to his team, toughness, and being a spark plug. (full article)

 

Baseball America scouting report (article)

Stevenson began his college career at Nevada, where he was the 2015 Mountain West Conference co-freshman of the year. He transferred to Arizona, by way of Chabot (Calif.) JC, following head coach Jay Johnson. Stevenson produced two solid years in the Pac-12 Conference, showing good on-base skills and a disciplined approach at the plate. He’s an above-average runner who covers a lot of ground in the outfield. Stevenson also pitched early in his career, but his future is as an outfielder.

 

So that is what the Blue Jays drafted in the 10th round but what did they get?

 

Well, Stevenson has come as advertised. The native of Fremont, CA started his professional career as a member of the Gulf Coast League Blue Jays on June 18th. Playing right field and leading off for the Blue Jays, Stevenson wasted little time collecting his first pro career hit with a leadoff line drive single to right field in the first inning. He struck out in his next at-bat but walked and scored in his 3rd and 5th at-bats to finish 1-for-3 with two runs scored, two walks, and a strikeout.

 

This is a prime example of the type of production Cal Stevenson has brought to the Blue Jays minor league system, minus the K.

 

Cal Stevenson’s stay with the GCL Blue Jays lasted 10 days, 6 games. He finished with a .474 batting average, a stolen base, a pair of doubles, a pair of RBI, and 11 walks to 3 strikeouts.

 

The 21-yr-old joined the Bluefield Blue Jays of the Appalachian League on June 28th and hasn’t skipped a beat. In 17 games, Cal is batting .294 with 24 runs scored, 3 doubles, 8-RBI, 19 walks, 6 stolen bases and 9 strikeouts.  He is sporting a .448 OBP while slugging just .338.

While his Bluefield numbers, especially the SLG%, may not be worthy of this level of write up, the fact that Cal Stevenson has managed to reach base in every single game he’s played (23GP) is something special. He was held hitless in two games, June 23rd (0-for-2 with 2-R and 3-BB) and July 4th (0-for-3, R, 2-BB).

 

He has more multi-walk games than multi-hit games. Stevenson has a three-hit game (June 25th) and six two-hit games while possessing one four-walk game (June 29th), a pair of three walk games, and six two walk games.

 

As a result of hitting at the top of the order and getting on-base with some regularity, Stevenson has crossed the plate with some frequency. His 19 walks and 24 runs scored put him near the top of the Appy League leaders in those categories. He has the second most walks trialing Shervyen Newton and Brandon Riley (20 BB) for the league lead. Four runs scored separate Stevenson from the league leader, Nolan Gorman, with 28 runs. Bluefield’s outfielder has a .451 OBP which is the 5th best in the league.

 

Closing Thoughts

It is possible that Cal Stevenson will make head to Vancouver to join an outfield which consists of Griffin Conine, Mc Gregory Contreras, Tanner Kirwer, Brandon Polizzi, and Hunter Steinmetz before the end of the month. However, that is a crowded outfield. Either move up Conine or Kirwer to Lansing or allow Stevenson to bypass Vancouver and head straight to Lansing.

 

The ease by which he has handled the Apply League, I’d like to see Stevenson bypass Vancouver and head straight to Lansing. This would allow Ryan Noda or Chavez Young to move up to the Florida State League to join the Dunedin Blue Jays. He has the makings of a solid 4th outfielder in the upper minors.

 

Win-win

 

 

Feature Image: DaveMe

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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.