Join Jays From the Couch as we highlight the 2019 season of Buffalo’s Anthony Alford and Vancouver’s Ronny Brito and Dominic Abbadessa
OF Anthony Alford
This once highly-touted prospect his second so-so season at Triple-A, along with another season beset with trips to the disabled list. Alford plays the game hard. This results in injuries; however, these injuries cost him a chance at laying claim to one of Toronto’s outfield spots in 2019.
The former 3rd round selection of the 2012 Draft appeared in 76 games with the Buffalo Bisons and 16 games with the Blue Jays. Alford got off to a slow start, batting .135 with a double, a triple, and 2 home runs. More importantly, Alford walked 6 times and struck out a season-high 31 times in 20 games.
He played 25 games in May, posting a .275 batting with a .783OPS. Alford lowered his strikeouts to 26 while walking 10 times. He also collected 7 doubles, a triple, 2 home runs, and scored 17 runs.
On June 14th, Anthony Alford was placed on the temporarily inactive list and activated on June 18th. Alford was in the midst of a hot streak which saw him raise his batting average from .213 on June 5th to .248 on June 13th. He would end the month with a .256 batting average thanks to a 22-for-61 (.361BA) an injury-shortened month.
Alford went on the 7-day IL retroactive June 24th, missing all of July. Anthony returned to Buffalo on August 7th but was placed on the IL 10 days later. Finally, Anthony Alford was activated on August 26th and recalled to the Major Leagues on September 3rd. He would bat .261 with .716OPSin 12 games in August.
The Bisons outfielder finished with a .259 batting average, 16 doubles, 3 triples, 7 home runs, 37RBI, 46 runs, 22SB, and a .754OPS. Alford posted a .152ISO with a .365BABIP while posting a .333wOBA and 95wRC+.
Once considered a patient hitter, who consistently gets on base, and produces professional at-bats, Alford continues to regress. After posting a 7.2BB% and 26.9K% in 2018 with the Herd, he posted a 9.7BB% and 29.5K% in 2019. His BB/K increased from 0.22 to 0.33; however, these numbers are still a far cry from the his 2017 marks of 0.78 BB/K thanks to a 12.1BB% and 15.5K% he posted in Double-A.
The 6-foot-1 outfielder produced a 15.2% HR/FB with a 25.3FB% and 45.6GB% but finished with an impressive 29.1LD%. Alford did a nice job of using the entire field with a 41.6Pull%, 40.5Oppo%, and going up the middle 17.9% of the time. With the Herd, he primarily batted leadoff (26GP), 3rd (20GP), or 5th (13GP). He found the most success batting 3rd with a .316BA and .922OPS with 3 for his 7 HR. Anthony Alford finished with a .294BA and .937OPS with RISP.
In the field, Anthony Alford made 62 starts in the outfield where committed 4 errors and registered 2 outfield assists. He was used in LF (12GP), CF (24GP), and RF (26GP).
Home: .282BA with 8 2B, 2 3B, 3HR, 19RBI, and a .780OPS
Away: .236BA with 8 2B, 1 3B, 4HR, 18RBI, and 728OPS
LHP: .227/.346/.318 (88AB)
Most Productive Game
This one was tough. Alford collected 6 total bases twice. Once on April 11 with a 2-for-5 game, a double and a home run, 4RBI, a CS, and 3K. The other time was on August 3rd, he went 3-for-4 with a run scored, a double, and a triple. He had two 4RBI games and two 3 runs scored games. He collected 3 hits in a game 4 times and stole two bases in a game three times. Ultimately, I went with his May 29th performance. He went 2-for-4 with two runs scored, two doubles, 3 RBI, and 4 total bases.
Anthony Alford is in a pickle.
His name has been thrown around as a possible trade piece (not a stand-alone piece).
He is out of options.
He is one of 7 outfielders competing for 4 or 5 slots depending on how the Blue Jays construct the roster.
The Opening Day outfield has two locks (at this time) with Lourdes Gurriel Jr. in LF, Randall Grichuk in RF or CF. Teoscar Hernandez could also play CF but he may end up seeing more AB’s at DH. Billy McKinney (1 option), Derek Fisher (out of options), Jonathan Davis (2 options), and Anthony Alford will battle it out for the 3rd, 4th, and possibly 5th outfield spots.
My guess, barring trade or injury, is that Alford and Fisher make the team with McKinney and Davis starting the year in AAA.
INF/OF Ronny Brito
Ronny Brito was acquired along with RHP Andrew Sopko for C Russell Martin from the Los Angeles Dodgers on January 11th, 2019. He was a highly regarded IFA signing, inked on July 2nd, 2015 out of San Francisco de Macoris, Dominican Republic, Brito played 56 games with the Vancouver Canadians, 5 games with the Lansing Lugnuts, and 4 games with the Dunedin Blue Jays. He played his first game of 2019 as a member of the Dunedin Blue Jays on May 30th, going 2-for-4 with a run scored, a double, a walk, and a strikeout. Brito batted .308 with a double, a run scored, 2BB, and 5K. The Blue Jays returned Brito to Extended Spring Training on June 7th.
On June 13th, Ronny Brito was assigned to the C’s; unfortunately, he was unable to find his footing in June and July. In his first two months in the Northwest League, Ronny Brito managed to bat .186 with 3 doubles, a triple, two home runs, 10RBI, 16 walks, and 61K across 39 games. Ronny produced a solid final month with a .279BA, along with 3 doubles, 2HR, 6RBI, and 5/21 BB/K in 17 games.
Brito finished with a .216BA with 6 doubles, a triple, 4 home runs, 16RBI, 21BB, 82K, and .614OPS. The 20-yr-old produced a .294wOBA and 79wRC+ along with a .105ISO and .352BABIP.
The 6-foot-0, 4-yr minor league veteran, produced a 9.9BB% and 38.7K% for a .26 BB/K. Brito pulled the ball 45.9% and 32.1Oppo%.
In the field, Brito spent time playing 1st base (8GP), 3rd base (20GP), SS (11GP), and 2nd base (12GP). He committed a total of 14 errors with 9 while manning the hot corner. Brito produced a .864FPCT at 3rd base with the C’s.
Home: .259BA with 3 2B, 0 3B, 0 HR, 4RBI, and .631OPS
Away: .181BA with 3 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 12RBI, and .599OPS
LHP: .298/.377/.319 (47AB)
Most Productive Game
Brito only had one multi-RBI game, cashing in 3RBI with a 1-for-6 (triple) on July 6th. He produced two three-hit games but his most productive game came on August 3rd as a member of the Vancouver Canadians. He went 2-for-3 with a run scored, a HR, an RBI, and 5 total bases.
The Rule V eligible prospect turns 21 on March 22nd. He is safe from being selected at the upcoming Rule V Draft. He should graduate to Lansing, where he will most likely get every opportunity to grab hold of the everyday 3rd base job.
OF Dominic Abbadessa
The former 23rd round selection from the 2016 Draft was lights out for the Bluefield Blue Jays in 2018. He produced a .311 batting average with a .787OPS, 14 doubles, 3 triples, two home runs, and 18 stolen bases. Those numbers earned him a spot on the Lansing Lugnuts roster to begin the 2019 season.
Abbadessa posted a .189BA with 3 doubles, 2 triples, 5RBI, 12 walks, 28 strikeouts, and 3-for-6 stolen bases in 26 games. On May 14th the native of Huntington Beach, CA. was assigned to the Vancouver Canadians roster where he remained for the duration of the season.
The 22-yr-old played 44 games with the C’s; unfortunately, he did fair much better. With the C’s, Abbadessa batted just .184 with a double, two triples, 8RBI, 12BB, 30K, and 10-for-12 stolen bases. In 11 games in June, Dom batted .189 with a triple and 4 stolen bases. He then batted .229 with a double and a triple in 14 games in July. In the final month of the season he batted just .127 with no extra-base hits but stole 4 bases.
The 5-foot-10 outfielder produced a disappointing .232wOBA and 40wRC+ while posting a .034ISO and .231BABIP. He finished with a 7.4BB% and 18.4K% with the C’s. Dominic Abbadessa may not have gotten many hits but he did an excellent job using the entire field with a 35.8Pull% and 39.2Oppo%. 55.5% of his batted balls resulted in groundballs with 31.8% resulting in flyballs.
Dominic Abbadessa found himself batting in the bottom of the order, spending most of his time with the C’s batting 9th.
In the field, Dominic Abbadessa played all three outfield positions. As a member of the Lugnuts, he mostly played right field where he collected one outfield assist and committed two errors. With Vancouver, Abbadessa split his time between LF (21GP) and CF (19GP) with one game in RF. He collected 2 outfield assists in LF and two more in CF with no errors.
Home: .134BA with 1 2B, 0 3B, 0 HR, 4RBI, and .355OPS
Away: .225BA with 0 2B, 2 3B, 0 HR, 4RBI, and .562OPS
LHP: .125/.250/.125 (24AB)
Most Productive Game
On July 12th, Dominic Abbadessa collected 5 total bases, a season-high, going 3-for-5. The 3-hits, also a season-high. This was not his most productive game. On July 26th, he went 2-for-3 with two total bases, 3 runs scored, a walk, and two stolen bases.
Dominic Abbadessa had a character-building season. It is unlikely he will develop into a major league outfielder; however, he still has a chance to be a valuable minor league 4th outfielder. He should get a chance to return Lansing to start the 2020 season.
Featured image credit: R.Mueller
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