Join Jays From the Couch as we spotlight Tayler Saucedo, a tall left-handed pitching prospect in the Blue Jays system
Acquired: 21st round of the 2015 Draft
The 6-foot-5 pitcher out of Honolulu, HI., has moved from the starter to bullpen to starter to bullpen to….you get the picture. In 2017 as a member of the Lansing Lugnuts, Saucedo spent much of his time in the bullpen. However, after a promotion to Dunedin resulted in a move to the rotation. He spent all of 2018 as a starter with the A-Advanced D-Jays and Double-A Fisher Cats.
Thus far in 2019, Tayler Saucedo is being used primarily out of the bullpen with the occasional start. He’s made 5 starts, 1 at AA and 4 at AAA, making 3 starts for Buffalo between June 23rd and July 3rd. While he isn’t stretched out to pitch deep into the game during these starts, he gave his team a chance to win.
In 4 Triple-A starts, Tayler Saucedo owns a 0.00ERA with one win. He limited opponents to a .179BA and holds a .072WHIP. He’s walked 2 and struck out 9 over 16.2IP. Those are some quality spot starts.
His longest start in 2019 a 5.0IP, 3H, 1HB, and 2K start for Buffalo on May 5th. He threw 58 pitches for the win. He’s also thrown 70 pitches on June 27th but was pulled with 2 outs in the 5th inning for an ND.
Whatcha Got There?
Saucedo doesn’t throw hard with his FB around 90, SL/CH low 80’s, and curve sitting in the mid-’70s. He’s done a good job limiting baserunners with just 6 free passes and an opponent batting average of .234 in 31.0IP in AAA. This has allowed him to post an impressive 1.03WHIP as a member of the Bisons.
With the Bisons, Saucedo owns a 5-0 record with a 1.45ERA, 3.04FIP, and 4.06xFIP which suggest possible regression. He’s doing a better job of limiting the longball in 2019, allowing just one home run when he was in AA and none as a member of the Herd. Quite the improvement after surrendering 16 in 2018 across 147.2IP.
So You Like Groundball!
Since his mid-season promotion to Dunedin in 2017 Saucedo has excelled as a groundball pitcher. He generates better than a 50GB percentage. In 26.2 innings with New Hampshire, he generated a 58.8GB%. With Buffalo, he’s been even better with a ground ball percentage of 61.8%. He also does a good job of getting batters to produce infield flyball, 23% in Triple-A.
That ship has sailed…for now. Ryan Feierabend and Shawn Morimando are pitching better (ish). T.J. Zeuch has joined Waguespack, Reid-Foley, and Thomas Pannone in the rotation. To top it all off, Ryan Borucki made his first rehab start with the Bisons on July 11th.
The tall lefty doesn’t have the stuff that jumps off the page, despite this, he is proving to be a valuable arm for the Blue Jays organization. His ability to locate, generate groundballs, and pitch multiple innings, not to mention being a lefty, is something to keep around. Saucedo could be pitching himself into a roster spot or a spring training invite.
He is RuleV eligible again this offseason and isn’t likely to get on the 40-man roster.
****UPDATE: Tayler Saucedo needed 41 pitches to get through two scoreless innings in relief on July 12th. The tall lefty walked 2, striking out 3, and allowed 2 hits dropping his ERA to 1.34. *****
*Featured Image Credit: R.Mueller
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