Join Jays From the Couch as we cover the progress of Toronto Blue Jays prospects in Fall and Winter Leagues this offseason
The Arizona Fall League is underway. This AFL season will the most highly scrutinized, by fans of the Toronto Blue Jays, AFL season in a very long time. With the Blue Jays sending it’s prized prospect, one Vladimir Guerrero Jr. along with Eastern League MVP and EL rookie of the year Cavan Biggio, INF Santiago Espinal (via Steve Pearce trade), P Nate Pearson (super excited), P Jackson McClelland, P Zach Jackson, P Shawn Morimando.
Originally Bo Bichette was included in the group but it was decided he would take the time to recover from a long season….good call. Bo played a lot of baseball in 2018. He didn’t get any time to rest over the Eastern League All-Star break or the MLB All-Star break after being named and playing in the Future’s Game. He was given a few extra days off here and there but not nearly enough.
Santiago Espinal will take his place.
Vlad Jr., Cavan Biggio AND Nate Pearson? ?
Your #BlueJays prospects look to repeat as champs at the Arizona Fall League!
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) October 9, 2018
The Saguaros are coached by Stubby Clapp (the next Blue Jays skipper maybe???) and will be joined by former New Hampshire Fisher Cats player and now coach Andy Fermin (position coach). Brian Buchanan (hitting coach), Jose Jaimes (pitching coach), and Bryan Hickerson (pitching coach) round out the staff.
The club is filled with prospects from the following organizations: Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Texas, Kansas City, and Toronto. There are a few familiar faces on the club, Lane Thomas (drafted by Toronto in 2014) and Conner Greene (Drafted by Toronto in 2013). Both prospects currently in the Cardinals organization.
Game 1 (0-1) Surprise 8 Salt River 10
Vlad and Biggio were the only Blue Jays prospect to see game action in the AFL Opener.
1st: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. struck out in his first at-bat for the 3rd out of the 1st inning.
2nd: Cavan Biggio singled to lead off the 2nd inning. Biggio stole second and came around to score on Meibrys Viloria‘s single.
3rd: After back-to-back singled to open the bottom of the 3rd inning, Julio Pablo Martinez stole home on a double steal. Khalil Lee walked. VGJ lined out to RF but advanced Cole Tucker to 3rd base. With Cavan Biggio at the plate, Lee stole second base. Biggio hit a sac fly to LF to score Tucker. 3-0.
6th: Former Lansing Lugnut, Jesus Tinoco was lifted for Mitch Horacek. Guerrero welcomed the new pitcher with a leadoff ground-rule double to LF on a 2-1 pitch. Biggio popped out to 3rd base. Guerrero scored to tie the game at 5-5 when Andy Young tripled to CF.
7th: With two outs and Cole Tucker standing at 3rd base, Vladdy hit an RBI single to CF to pull Surprise to within one run, 7-6. Biggio flew out to LF to end the inning.
9th: Down 10 to 6, the Saguaros made a late push in the 9th inning. Back-to-back groundball outs to lead off the inning, Cole Tucker and Khalil Lee hit back to back singles two-out singles. Guerrero smacked the first pitch he saw for a 2-RBI double to CF. Lane Thomas came into the game to pinch run for Vladd but Biggio hit a 3-1 pitch to 1st baseman to end the game.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. wrapped up his first day of Arizona Fall League today.
He went 3 for 5 with 3 RBI and 1 Run for the Surprise Saguaros in a 10-8 loss. pic.twitter.com/Ai3LaXNGSm
— Tim and Sid (@timandsid) October 9, 2018
Vladdy finished the game with a single, a pair of doubles, and 3 RBI. Biggio went 1-for-4 with an RBI and a stolen base.
19 years old
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) October 10, 2018
Game 2 is October 10th. Check back in tomorrow for another play-by-play of your Toronto Blue Jays.
Featured Pic credit: Ryan Mueller
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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.