Join Jays From the Couch in Reviewing the 2022 Triple-A Buffalo Bisons Starting Rotation
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The Buffalo Bisons will have a solid starting rotation if not a spectacular rotation. The rotation doesn’t have power arms or highly rated prospects but there are a few arms with promise as Major League starters or future bullpen pieces.
Nick Allgeyer LHP (26)
A former 12th round selection from the 2018 draft, the 6-foot-3 lefty made his Major League debut on July 2nd. He threw a perfect inning in relief and that’s all the action he would see with the Blue Jays. He was waived later that month and returned to Buffalo.
In 2022, Allgeyer should take a regular turn in the Bison’s rotation, hopefully with better results than in 2021. In 22 appearances (17 starts), the native St. Louis, MO. finished with a 5-5 record with a 5.34ERA and 5.60FIP. He throws a low 90s FB, mid-70s CU, and mid-80s CH who doesn’t strike out a lot. In 2021, Allgeyer didn’t show good command (5.24BB/9) after posting 2.73 and 2.21BB/9 in his previous two seasons. Therefore, we can hope he improves his command and provides the Herd with a solid lefty starter in 2022.
Bowden Francis RHP (25)
Acquired from the Milwaukee Brewers for Rowdy Tellez in 2021, Francis is said to possess three fringe pitches that he is able to command. He added a fourth in 2021, adding a nice slider. The 6-foot-5 righty started 2021 at Double-A, finishing the season in Triple-A with a record of 10-6 over 21 starts.
With the Bisons, Francis posted a 3.49ERA with a 3.78 while striking our 9.08/9IP and walking 2.79/9IP. With the Herd, he held opponents to a .190BA and a 0.98WHIP. He should easily repeat those numbers and provide some really important starting depth.
Thomas Hatch RHP (27)
Hatch didn’t get his 2021 season started until May 20th. He made 15 appearances, 14 starts, with the Buffalo Bisons posting a 2-6 with a 4.04ERA. He struck 70 batters over 64.2IP while walking just 19, showing excellent control.
In 2022, Hatch will definitely spend time in Toronto, most likely as a multi-inning reliever, but he still has the potential to develop into a starter. Thomas Hatch could be the best starter in Buffalo, utilizing his high spin-rate mid-90s sinking fastball to post another impressive GB%.
Anthony Kay LHP (27)
The lefty was acquired from the New York Mets for Marcus Stroman but has yet to solidify himself as a major leaguer. In 2021, Kay split his time between Triple-A and the Majors. He posted impressive strikeout numbers (10.43K/9) in 33.2 innings with Toronto. As a starter with Buffalo, Kay made 8 starts without a win and an ugly 8.89 ERA. His 5.57FIP suggests some bad luck but 8.89 over 26.1 innings is nasty.
I really hope that Anthony Kay does well for the Bisons as a starter, better than his 3-10, 5.79ERA over 23 Triple-A starts. If he struggles, then a permanent move to the bullpen would benefit Kay and the organization. His high spin rate mid-90 fastball and plus curve play up better in the bullpen. Plus he is a lefty.
Casey Lawrence RHP (34)
A valuable minor league starter, Casey will provide the Bisons with innings. Innings that don’t matter towards developing a prospect. Those innings just provide rest for a starter or maybe a tired bullpen.
That doesn’t mean that Lawrence is useless, far from it. He also provides veteran leadership while posting a record of 8-3 with 4.40ERA between Double-A and Triple-A.
Jeremy Beasley RHP (26)
After making 25 starts in 2019 and 18 starts in 2018, the former 30th round pick made 4 starts. While he is listed as a reliever, it is possible Beasley will return to starter status with some early struggles or injuries from those already in the rotation.
Beasley throws a nice 95mph fastball, 86mph change, and 82mph slider.
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