Re: 2019 Minor Leagues/Prospect Discussion Thread
Posted: Thu Nov 21, 2019 2:14 am
Sports is our Business
Robberse, along with fellow RHP Jiorgeny Casimiri were actually late signs from the 2018 class, acquired with bonus pool money the Blue Jays received in April deals with the Orioles and Athletics. Robberse, who has been pitching in the Honkbal Hoofdklasse, the Netherlands’ top league, since 2018 at the tender age of 17, stands out to Tinnish, who saw him in action in the Netherlands, in addition to looks the team’s scouting staff had at him at the European Championships. Despite the Blue Jays obvious interest, no other MLB teams had made Robberse a contract offer. Tinnish compared the Hoofdklass to D-2 competition, and said Robberse dominated hitters many years his senior there. In terms of Robberse’s delivery, Tinnish said….
….”it’s a top 10 in terms of Pitchers I’ve scouted. He has excellent rhythm and movement, great hip and shoulder tilt and separation, has a firm front side, and pitches in a good line to the plate. He has a good landing, and clean arm action.
Robberse recorded an 0.87 ERA in 10.1 GCL innings over 5 outings last summer, including 3 starts, walking none while fanning 9. At 6’1″/160, he’s added 20 lbs since signing, and has dialled his FB up to 93. Robberse will be 18 for all of the 2020 season. A year ago, Tinnish was telling all who would listen in the Blue Jays front office about a breakout prospect he’d tabbed named Gabriel Moreno. He gives Robberse a similar honour this year, such is the progress he made in a short period of time. If the Blue Jays are knocking on doors around MLB looking to upgrade the MLB roster, it’s very likely that other teams (one would think the Pirates, in particular, given their two new recent front office additions) would be inquiring about the young Dutch righthander. Reports suggest with his athleticism and makeup, he could compete in the Midwest League next year, but the Blue Jays will likely take their time with Robberse and start him at Vancouver.
One of the 11 players selected, however, was Blue Jays minor-league right-hander Dany Jimenez, who was chosen by the San Francisco Giants with the seventh overall pick. It marks the second straight year the Giants have dipped into the Blue Jays system, after selecting lefty Travis Bergen in 2018 (he was later returned to Toronto). Jimenez, 25, is coming off a strong 2019 he split between High A and Double A, posting a 2.59 ERA over 59 innings, with 93 strikeouts and 21 walks.
Per Baseball America, Jimenez was among the players getting significant buzz ahead of the draft. According to BA, he has a high-90s fastball with arm-side run, a plus slider and a promising changeup.
“He is one of the more well-rounded prospects available with fewer drawbacks than most available arms,” wrote BA’s J.J. Cooper, who also predicted he could slot in as a low-leverage set-up man.
The Blue Jays were well-aware Jimenez could be an attractive piece for another ballclub and weren’t surprised to see him taken from their system.
“He throws hard, he throws strikes, strikes guys out, he’s got good stuff,” Sheehan said. “The walks may be a little high, but he was definitely a guy we debated protecting. Every year you have a couple of guys where you’re not sure which way they go, and he was one of the guys we were worried about.”
The major hurdle with Rule 5 draftees is keeping them on the 26-man roster all season. Last year, of the 14 players selected in the draft, only three remained with their new club throughout the season as, my colleague C. Trent Rosecrans pointed out earlier this year. Toronto’s 2018 Rule 5 pick Elvis Luciano was among them, meanwhile, the two pitchers the club lost a year ago, Jordan Romano and Bergen, were returned. BA’s J.J. Cooper puts the odds of Jimenez sticking at 50-50.
During the minor-league portion of the draft, the Blue Jays selected right-handed reliever Hobie Harris (Yankees).
“He throws hard, he’s got good stuff, good breaking ball, and it’s probably what other teams saw in our guys that they took,” Sheehan said. “We had a couple of scouts who saw him over the course of the year at different times and they liked him, so he’ll probably compete in Double A and we’ll see where it goes.”
wamco wrote:Predict the impact , if any , the following players will have on the 2020 blue jays. Or what their season will look like in general. All are predicted to make the show at some point next season:
9) Nate Pearson, RHP, Toronto Blue Jays, Grade A-: Previously No. 10; 2.30 ERA in 102 innings between High-A/Double-A/Triple-A with 119/27 K/BB rate; you can make a good case for as high as No. 4 depending on assessment of Mize’s injury risk.
60) Jordan Groshans, SS-3B, Toronto Blue Jays, Grade B+: Previously No. 54; hot start with .337/.427/.482 in 23 games in Low-A until going down with foot injury; no change in status, just needs health.
70) Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP, Toronto Blue Jays, Grade B+: Previously unranked; 3.80 ERA with 126/24 K/BB in 109 innings in Low-A/High-A; throws hard, has a plus curveball, changeup improving, throws strikes, just needs to prove his durability.
86) Anthony Kay, LHP, Toronto Blue Jays, Grade B: Previously No. 87; 2.96 ERA with 135/56 K/BB in 134 innings in Double-A/Triple-A; posted 5.79 ERA in 14 major league innings with 13/5 K/BB; still has some command glitches but live-armed lefties get lots of slack.
Blue Jays: Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP (No. 6) -- The Mets’ second-round pick from the 2018 Draft pitched better than his numbers suggest he did at Class A Columbia, and he made six impressive starts for Class A Advanced Dunedin after joining the Blue Jays in the Marcus Stroman Trade Deadline deal to finish his first full season with a 126/24 K/BB and .238 BAA in 106 2/3 innings. The 19-year-old righty is a high-ceiling pitching prospect, armed with a plus fastball-curveball combo, an advanced changeup and a mature overall feel for his craft that could help him move quickly through the Minors.
Tier 1: Players with high expectations of both making the majors and playing at an All-Star level for a number of years
Tier 2: Players with an above average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 3: Players with an average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 4: Players who have the potential of making the majors, or have high likelihood of making the majors but providing minimal impact (e.g. middle reliever, low-ceiling UT guys)
Tier 5: Players who are worth keeping an eye on, but likely to never make a team’s 40-man roster
Hi Gregor, I wanted to get your take on the three catching prospects: Riley Adams, Gabriel Moreno and Alejandro Kirk. Between these three, who do you see making the jump to the big show if there are injuries to either Jansen or McGuire?
-- Felix, Toronto
None of those three are likely to make the jump in 2020. Adams is the closest after appearing in 81 games for Double-A New Hampshire, but the 23-year-old will at least require a full season at Triple-A Buffalo, if not more reps with the Fisher Cats. Adams also appears to the fringiest prospect of the bunch with most experts favouring the upside of Moreno and Kirk, who are at least a couple years away. Instead of calling up a prospect, the Jays are likely to add a couple of veteran catchers on minor league deals to serve as this year's depth.
Alex Nolan’s mission in baseball took shape on the field at Brock University.
The 23-year-old Burlington-born pitcher, who grew up in Arizona but returned to Ontario after high school and enrolled at Brock, has long dreamed of reaching the big leagues. He’d assumed it was a goal shared by many of his university teammates, until an eye-opening conversation during his second year.
“I said, ‘Hey, you ever think of getting drafted? You ever think about playing pro ball?’” Nolan recalled last fall. “(The response) was, ‘No, I just play Brock baseball. That’ll never happen.’”
That answer surprised Nolan, and his objective shifted from that day forward. Getting drafted by a major-league team was still the dream, but so was changing the mindset of Canadian players — and the attitude toward them.
“The mindset of young athletes in Canada is, ‘Oh, I’ve got to go to the (United States) to make it. That’s where I’ve got to go.’ But that’s not to say it can’t happen, just because you’re playing in Canada,” he said.
Nolan wanted to create a path for others, to prove Ontario University Athletics could be a stepping stone to a major-league career, just like American Division I or II.
He got one step closer this past June, by signing with the Blue Jays as a free agent.
Nolan is the third Brock Badger ever to land with an MLB organization. Pitcher Jamaal Joseph signed with the Florida (now Miami) Marlins in 2004, and infielder Shaun Valeriote was drafted by the Jays in the 39th round in 2012 — still the only OUA product ever selected.
The Top 10 (ETA)
1. Casey Mize, Tigers (2020)
2. Nate Pearson, Blue Jays (2020)
3. Forrest Whitley, Astros (2020)
4. Michael Kopech, White Sox (2020)
5. Sixto Sanchez, Marlins (2020)
6. Dustin May, Dodgers (2020)
7. Matt Manning, Tigers (2020)
8. Luis Patino, Padres (2021)
9. Spencer Howard, Phillies (2020)
10. Grayson Rodriguez, Orioles (2021)
Complete list »
Best Fastball: Pearson, Kopech (80)
Pearson and Kopech regularly operate in the upper 90s and push into triple-digit territory with late run that makes their fastballs even more difficult to hit, though Kopech did miss all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Pearson famously hit 104 mph during the Arizona Fall League's 2018 Fall Stars Game, while Kopech reached 105 during a 2017 start in high Class A.