I’m not going to say he confirmed my drunken rant from the other day, but Marc Hulet’s highly anticipated (by me at least) top 15 team by team prospect list was released for the Jays today. As a Toronto fan, it is a must read. I won’t get into too much detail but, for me, a couple of points jumped out.
Some of the floor/ceiling comments were both interesting and exciting. To say Aaron Sanchez has a floor of Garza and a ceiling of Verlander is pretty fantastic indeed. You can see why reports have any trade talks including Sanchez as being dismissed out of hand. I was also impressed with Nicolino’s write up, despite the assertion that ‘none of his pitches currently project to be a swing-and-miss-out-pitch at the big league level’, give me a lefty with plus control, a plus changeup, and a sneaky fastball any day.
I had predicted two of the four members of the Dunedin Dealers of Doom (I’ve changed the nickname again) being in the Jays rotation by 2014. Justin Nicolino was one, the second is Noah Syndergaard, which makes his blurb mildly disappointing. The lack of secondary pitches has made more prospect evaluators than Hulet raise the possibility of Syndergaard eventually being a late inning reliever. Obviously, to be the Jays third ranked prospect, the assumption is the twenty year old righty develops into an upper end starter. I’m in this camp and he’s my second member of the DDOD to make the Jays roster.
Two of the most exciting members of the top fifteen both spent a bit of time in Vancouver. Full disclosure, I live in Vancouver and also write about the Canadians. I saw Roberto Osuna a couple of times and he was flat out dominant each time. To see him make
such a leap up the list vindicates my decidedly amateur opinion of him. D.J. Davis had a tougher time in Vancouver, but it wasn’t hard to see the raw tools he possesses. I did like the comment that he could incorporate his lower half a bit more in his swing. Once he figures out how to use his trunk then Davis will be a legit gap to gap hitter with plus speed.
With Anthony Gose on the cusp of the big team, Jake Marisnick and D.J. Davis in the top fifteen, and (if you read through the comments of the article) Dalton Pompey and Dwight Smith JR making the ‘next 15′, the Blue Jays system is loaded at center field. The same can be said at catcher where you have a young starter in the majors, your number one prospect knocking on the door, and two more catchers waiting in the wings. There is trade bait there.
But what we learned this past season, pitching is crucial. If left alone, prospects two through five have a genuine chance to make up four fifths of the Jays rotation in two to three years. Let’s leave them alone. And allow us fans to dream.