Top 12 Jays Draft Targets, JJ Edition: #9 LHP Tyler Anderson


This message will continue to be posted on each of the top 12 draft targets I will be listing daily until draft day: the players listed are not “the best” players in the draft, they are simply those that I believe could be around when the Jays draft, and that could wind up being selected by the Blue Birds when their turns come up. The list has 12 of the top targets and will be presented in reverse order (from least likely, to most likely).

#9: Tyler Anderson (21)

LH Pitcher / 6’4″ 215 lbs / Las Vegas, Nevada

Born: 30th of July, 1989

High School Team: Spring Valley High, Las Vegas Nevada

College: Oregon

Quick Facts:

  • Ranked the 16th college prospect by Baseball America in 2011.
  • Picked off 7 base-runners in 2011.
  • 30 of his 114 Ks this season were to hitters caught looking.
  • Was drafted by the Twins in the 50th rd of the 2008 draft.
  • Won the 2011 Golden Spikes Award Watch List.
  • Made the 2011 Louisville Slugger Pre-Season All-American 3rd Team.
  • Was on the 2010 All-Pac 10 1st Team.
  • Made the 2010 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team.
  • The Baseball Beginnings evaluation of him is available here.
  • Has 3 Oregon records: 285 career Ks, 114 Ks in a single season (2011), 14 Ks in single game (March 4, 2011).
  • His major in College was Political Sciences.


  • 2010: 7-5 / 2.98 ERA /  102.2 IP /  33 BB / 105 Ks / .219 Avg Against
  • Summer ’10 for Team USA (College):  3 GS / 0.00 ERA / 16 IP / 6 hits / 3 BB / 14 Ks
  • 2011: 8-3 / 2.17 ERA / 15 GP / 1 CG / 107.2 IP / 73 hits / 35 BB / 114 Ks / .201 Avg Against


  • There is a video of Tyler pitching as a Duck:
  • Another video of Tyler being interviewed. Bad camera handling, but telling interview nonetheless.

Pre-Draft Rankings (out of all hitters in brackets):

  • BA Ranking May 25th: #24 (15)
  • John Sickels May 9th: #25 (16)

To tell you the truth, Anderson is only included on this list in “dream like hope” that he is still around for the Jays in the sandwich round. While I don’t see them grabbing the big lefty in the 1st rd, he does have a lot of attributes that the Jays could be enticed to gamble on. He’s big and durable, he’s a lefty, he throws strikes, and he commands all of his pitches very well. The biggest selling point for the Jays, however, is his above-average change-up, something that allows his 90-94 MPH fastball to work very well for him.

The Jays have usually been enticed to grab pitchers that show a great feel for pitching, not just power pitchers. While the #10 prediction on the draft target list, Jose Fernandez, could be painted as a power pitcher, he still has a good feel for pitching. Well, Anderson has a much better feel for pitching overall, and his arsenal is broader as a result. A 2-seam fastball (88-93 MPH), and a 4-seam fastball (90-94 MPH), both move very well. Add in a great looking slider, a mediocre curve, and the previously mentioned above-average change up, and you’ve got the makings for a lot of deception from Anderson.

However, it was while listening to various prospect experts talk about his work ethic and makeup that I really became a huge fan of Anderson’s. He’s not somebody that will sit on his laurels and wait for things to come to him. He’s a focused individual that takes his approach on the mound very seriously. In that sense, when they spoke about him, he sounded a lot like a young Roy Halladay. Someone who knows that it takes a ton of work to get better as a pitcher and that regardless of how much polish you have, you can always get better. That kind of individual is usually very receptive to instruction. I’m not saying the results of his hard work will make him into a Halladay kind of pitcher, but at the very least it gives him a shot at reaching his full potential, whatever that may be.

The one knock I have on Anderson is his somewhat high BB rate that didn’t really improve year-over-year from 2010 to 2011. If he’s going to have success in the higher levels of the minors, he’s going to have to walk fewer batters. Still, if you read and listen to most industry experts out there, it’s the norm to say that he can turn into a #2 or #3, depending on how well he matures on the mound.

As a lefty that can reach 93-94 MPH, there’s no doubt that he’s on many radars as we head towards the draft. That being said, there are so many arms available out there that there will likely be a few, such as Anderson, that could spill into the Sandwich round. If that happens, I expect Anderson could very well become a Blue Jays prospect.

Expected Selection (if selected by the Jays): Sandwich round, 35th overall.

He’s got everything in the check-list of what the Jays look for in a pitcher. His ceiling is very high and the team who drafts him will likely have him move fairly quickly through their system due to his overall polish on the mound. He’s a tremendous pitching prospect being overshadowed by many other high-quality arms in this draft. I really do hope he slips to the Jays at #35….but I wouldn’t bank on it.

– MG

Read the others on the Top 12 list here:

2011 Top 12 Draft Targets, JJ Edition

  • 12 – Jorge Lopez, Academia de Milagrosa, Cayey, P.R. JJ Analysis here.
  • 11 – Jackie Bradley Jr, South Carolina. JJ Analysis here.
  • 10 – Jose Fernandez, Alonso HS. JJ Analysis here.

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