Fingers crossed minor league baseball games will be played in 2021. Which begs the question, Where will the Blue Jays play in 2021?
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Using the latest rankings from MLB.com 30 Top Prospect List for the Toronto Blue Jays, I’ve decided to review each prospect’s 2019/20 and see if we can’t nail down where these prospects will play in 2021.
#30 and 29
#28 and 27
#26 and 25
The Blue Jays signed Sem out of the baseball hotbed of Zeist, Netherlands, in 2019. Toronto used the bonus money they received from the Baltimore Orioles and Oakland Athletics to sign the interesting righty. He joined the Gulf Coast Blue Jays and debuted on July 27th. Sem threw two perfect innings, striking out three batters in his first professional appearance. The 6-foot-1 righty made 5 appearances (3 starts) lasting 2, 2, 2, 4, and 0.1 innings and allowed just one run.
There is not much to go off here. He is clearly a low risk, high reward signing. His FB is thrown in the low 90s with some room to grow. He also throws a CU and CH. MLB.com gave his FB and CU a 55 grade while his control received a 50 grade.
At this stage in his development, Sem Robberse should have spent 2020 between the GCL and Bluefield. Therefore, he should spend some of 2021 in Short-Season A-ball but since that league no longer exists in its previous form, it is entirely possible for Sem to remain in the GCL to get more instruction. I see him beginning the year in extended Spring Training with a chance at joining the D-Jays in Dunedin prior to the Draft to put some of the lessons learned to the test.
A high selection, 3rd round, from the 2017 Draft, Riley Adams reached Double-A in 2019. A hitter-thrower catcher, many felt that Riley was the best catching prospect in the 2017 Draft. He received 60-70 grades for his raw power. Also getting praised for his ability to produce solid OBP numbers and to impact the other team’s running game with a cannon for an arm.
During his first three professional seasons, the 24-yr-old has shown average power, hitting a career-high 14 home runs between Dunedin and New Hampshire in 2019. He continues to post good OBP thanks to his high BB%. Across 251 games, Riley owns a career .363OBP, posting a .366 mark in 81 games at AA. As a member of the Fisher Cats, the 6-foot-4 catcher posted a 9.6BB% with a .358wOBA and 133wRC+.
Unfortunately, Riley Adams has too much swing and miss in his game for a guy with average power. Whiffing 266 times in 251 games. While at Double-A, he posted an ugly 31.6K%; however, he did post a respectable .181ISO thanks to 11HR, 15 doubles, and 2 triples in 287 Double-A at-bats. While this wouldn’t cut at many other positions, it might not be too bad at catcher.
Behind the plate, Riley Adams has thrown out 39.2% of would-be base stealers, 82-of-209. In AA he caught 29.4% while allowing 10 passed balls. His game calling and movement behind the plate need some work but he’s made strides in these areas since being drafted.
The native of Encinitas, CA. was likely pegged for Tripe-A in 2019 with Alejandro Kirk nipping at his heels in Double-A. However, now it appears Kirk has a chance at being the Blue Jays everyday catcher in 2021, pushing one of Danny Jansen or Reese McGuire back to Buffalo. Most likely McGuire. For now, let’s just assume that it’ll be Riley Adams and some other guy sharing the workload in Buffalo.
At this stage in the game, Riley Adams appears to have a floor of a backup catcher; however, a swing adjustment to decrease strikeouts or increase his ISO could change that. I’d like to see Riley get some reps at 1st base and DH in 2021 to get his bat in the lineup and to showcase him for other teams.
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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.