Blue Jays’ struggles could open the door for Pompey

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 14: Dalton Pompey
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 14: Dalton Pompey /

After battling injuries throughout the majority of the year, Dalton Pompey is back in the lineup in AAA, and waiting for his next chance on the big league roster.

One of the forgotten men in the Blue Jays’ organization is Dalton Pompey, who looked like a future star when he cracked the lineup back on Opening Day in 2015. We’ve watched him for short stints over the last couple years, but otherwise he’s spent his playing days in Buffalo.

In 2017, Pompey has spent the vast majority of his time  on the disabled list, starting with a concussion that he sustained during the World Baseball Classic. While playing for Team Canada, Pompey got the concussion while trying to steal second base, and was out for a couple months dealing with that ailment.

He returned in early June only to go right back to the DL with a leg injury he sustained during one of his rehab games. For a player who looked so strong during the WBC, the season couldn’t have been going much worse, at least in the luck department.

Hopefully he’ll be able to put that behind him now, as he’s healthy and back in the lineup in Triple A Buffalo. Pompey made his return to their lineup on Tuesday night, and was back in there again Wednesday evening. He’s 0-7 in those two games, but the results will come as he gets comfortable and gets his timing and feel for the game back.

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For as frustrating as the 2017 campaign has been for the Canadian outfielder, things may be playing into his hand with the way the season has gone for the Blue Jays. They managed to take two of three from the Yankees, but the last two weeks have been disastrous for the Blue Jays’ chances of getting into the playoffs.

It’s hard to imagine them deciding to become sellers for another couple of weeks, but assuming that’s the way things go, it’s entirely possible Jose Bautista could be on the trading block. While he wasn’t a terribly popular free agent, he could be a very useful rental, especially if the Blue Jays are willing to kick in some of his remaining salary this season.

There hasn’t been any discussion to this end just yet, but Steve Pearce could also represent a useful trade piece for the Blue Jays, if they were so inclined. He has a year and 6.25 million remaining on his contract, but his positional flexibility and recent performance with the bat could draw some interest from rival clubs.

None of this is to say that the Blue Jays will trade Bautista or Pearce, but if they did it could certainly open the door for Pompey’s next opportunity in Toronto. Depending on the timeline, he’ll have to compete with the likes of Dwight Smith Jr., Anthony Alford, and maybe Michael Saunders for playing time, but his skill set would be a welcome addition to the Blue Jays lineup. The Blue Jays could be inclined to get a long look at him during September call-ups either way as well, so hopefully he can remain healthy as the season wears on.

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In the short term, it’s nice to see the 24 year old back on the field, and hopefully he can put the leg, and especially concussion issues behind him for good.