If you’ve talked to any Blue Jay fan the past two plus years, then you would hear how stacked the system is with high ceiling pitching prospects. Fast-forward to the present and that is no longer the case.
Keegan Matheson has introduced many casual a Blue Jay fan to two pitching prospects, who still remain in the system from what I am calling the “THE GREAT PURGE of 2015”, Conner Greene (read here) and Sean Reid-Foley (read here). Both excellent prospects and ones that are already being included on many Blue Jays Top Prospect lists.
Sadly, Shane Dawson continues to fly under the radar.
***Recently added to MLB Pipeline’s Top 30 Blue Jays Prospect, coming in at #30.****
Dawson is a 17th round selection, back in 2012. He is a left-handed pitcher. I’m surprised he wasn’t included as one of the many LHP included in THE GREAT PURGE. As luck would have it, Dawson is also a native of Drayton Valley, Alberta.
He throws a low 90’s fastball, which he can effectively add and subtract mhp to keep batters off balance. His slider and change up have seen some improvement this season and I’ve seen them consistently sit in the mid and low 80’s, respectively.
As a 21-year-old, Shane has enjoyed a breakout season with the Lansing Lugnuts, where he earned Player of the Week honors in July and was named to the Mid-Season All-Star team. But to top it all, Shane Dawson was a member of the Gold medal winning Canadian Pan-Am baseball team. He effectively pitched out of Canada’s bullpen, making two appearances over six and a third innings. He allowed two hits, walked one and struck out 5 while finishing the tournament with a sparkingly 0.00 ERA.
Before his promotion from Lansing (A-Ball) to Dunedin (Advanced A-Ball), Shane was leading the Mid-West League with 12 wins, and was near the top in strike outs and WHIP. He was putting up number one would typically see from a teams top pitching prospect.
In his first three seasons in the Jays system, he has demonstrated above average control of the strike zone. In 100IP with Lansing, Dawson continued to show an ability to get batters to swing and miss, averaging 8.58 strike outs per 9IP. The 6’1″ Canadian also continued to show good command of the strike zone by limiting walks with only 2.15 walks per 9IP. He owned a FIP of 3.20, a WHIP of 1.18, and solid K-BB% of 17.7%, while winning 12 games and losing 4.
In Lansing, Shane held opponents to a .255 BA and a .319 BABIP. Over his brief minor league career, his groundballs/flyballs splits are even and 2015 hasn’t been much different with a 1.04 mark. He has allowed 15 long balls since 2012, with 8 of them coming this year.
More from Toronto Blue Jays Prospects
- One prospect the Blue Jays should not have traded at the deadline
- Blue Jays: Can expanded rosters provide positivity?
- Blue Jays: 2022 Tournament 12 returns as Canadian Futures Showcase
- Blue Jays: Top Pitching Prospect Tiedemann Impresses in AA Debut
- Blue Jays 2022 Draft: Who did Toronto Land in Round Two?
Recently, Dawson has received press for having an atrophied Infraspinatus muscle in his rotator cuff. (read here) and with the loss of two teammates prior to his draft year (read here). If he can keep rolling over the final month than we can expect to see some positive press about this young Canadian.
Not having a Infraspinatus muscle didn’t seem to effect him on this day.
Dawson’s ceiling appears to be as a reliever; however, if success continues to find him as he advances up the Jays system than developing into a decent 5th starter is a strong possibility. We will be keeping a close eye on the Lethbridge grad as he continues impress in Dunedin.