Jays New Bench King – INF/OF Mike McCoy


I know that many Jays fans rolled their eyes when the Jays decided to sign 2 defensive specialist Short Stops in Alex Gonzalez and John MacDonald. But it’s the unheralded addition of 2B/3B/SS/OF Mike McCoy from the Colorado Rockies that has me most intrigued heading into 2010.

Mike McCoy was a 34th rd draft pick in 2002 by the St-Louis Cardinals, out of the University of San Diego. He’s a survivor, having beaten the odds and made it all the way up  to AAA by the time he was 27 and never giving up on his dream to make it to MLB. He finally got his wish last season, getting a whole 5 AB and stealing 2 bases. Now with the Jays, he gets a chance to be the go-to-guy when the Jays need a speedster on the bases. If he takes his playing opportunities and does well, there’s no reason to think he wouldn’t get appropriate playing time. It seems that Mike must fell that this is his best chance to become a regular in MLB, since he’s putting up a great winter for the Tomateros de Culiacan in Mexico.

Winter Stats: 203 AB, 68 hits for a .300 average, 8 doubles, a triple, 2 HRs, 24 SBs, and a .404 OBP

Interestingly, he’s been playing at SS this winter since being acquired by the Jays. Looking at his stats through the minors, he has played ALL OVER the field, making his the perfect bench player for the Jays. In 2009 alone, Mike played 2B, SS, 3B, RF, CF, and LF. He even threw 1 inning and didn’t allow a hit or a walk!! Out of all of the acquisitions made by Alex, this one will be the biggest surprise to Jays fans in 2010, because he’ll be the Jays Joe Inglett 2.0 version. The one who is a terror on the base paths, and who will replace either Alex Gonzalez or Edwin Encarnacion should they be traded at some point. His OBP in AAA last season was .405, so not only does Mike bring smart base running with 40 stolen bases and only 6 times caught stealing, but he gets on base a ton. The Jays need this kind of output at lead off, and now that Marco Scutaro is gone, Mike may get a chance to prove himself this season.

2009 AAA stats: 462 AB, 142 hits, for a .307 average, 27 doubles, 5 triples, 2 HR, 40 SBs, 80 walks, 70 SO, .405 OBP, .400 SLG, .805 OPS.

If he can replicate anything close to what he did in 2009 while playing with the Jays, he’ll become a fan favourite in no time.

Minors Career Games Played Per Position (source: Baseball-Reference.com):

  • 2B: 325 games
  • SS: 304 games
  • 3B: 127 games
  • OF: 43 games
  • CF: 32 games
  • RF: 19 games
  • LF: 22 games
  • P: 3 games

To say Mike can play anywhere is an understatement. With Brad Emaus having a hard time in AA, it’s important that Mike become the versatile player the Jays have been looking for off the bench for a long time. I’ll be curious to see how well he does in Spring Training and in updating his progress throughout the year in 2010. Something tells me we’re all in for a surprise if he can stat the year off well. He could become a very important piece for the Jays in 2010 and beyond.