With the MLB amateur draft in full swing, I decided to look at some of the former first-round draft picks on the Toronto Blue Jays current roster. Including the skipper, the Blue Jays have nine former first rounders on their current squad.
The veteran reliever Jason Grilli is the highest drafted player on the entire Blue Jays team having been drafted 04th overall by the San Francisco Giants in the 1997 amateur draft out of Seton Hall University. Grilli was previously drafted out of high school in 1994 by the New York Yankees in the 24th round, however, Grilli opted for college ball.
The three players drafted before Grilli in 1997 were as follows:
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The Jays actually had the 5th overall selection and drafted outfielder Vernon Wells who became a fixture in Toronto for many years. Wells contractual stranglehold on the Jays budget became his Achilles Heel and Wells and his contract was eventually shipped to the Angels in 2013.
Now in his 15th season, Grilli has suited up for nine different teams during his MLB career and was an All-Star in 2013 with the Pirates. The 40-year old is in his second season with the Jays and is set to become a free agent at season’s end.
The fiery fan favorite has struggled this season after resurrecting his career north of the border last season. Grilli currently has an inflated 8.15 earned run average in 17.2 innings of work in 2017, however, the hurler has definitely made good on his draft selection crafting a very respectable lengthy MLB career.