Blue Jays: Is it time to change gears?
By Craig Borden
Test the youth
With the way this season has went, not many people would be too shocked if the Blue Jays are already diligently working their plan for the next season. This plan could be greatly benefited by having a month’s worth of samples on some of their talented Minor League players. Bring up some of these players and give them a chance to play every day. This will give everyone a chance to see what they can do along with providing valuable experience. This will also be occuring in a lower pressure environment as the team would be basically throwing in the towel on their playoff hopes at this point.
Bring up Teoscar Hernandez and allowing him to roam the outfield everyday give him a chance to settle in with his new club. His batting average in Buffalo has been nothing to scream about, but he has produced. In 20 games he has 16 RBI, 10 runs scored, four doubles, two triples, and four homers. It would be nice to see if this extra base pop plays well in the gaps in the Rogers Centre. Hernandez did hit his first MLB homer in the Rogers Centre last season off of Liriano.
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While looking at the players in the Minors, there are a few that have been having great seasons and have exceeded every challenge that has been thrown at them. One of those players is Danny Jansen. I know that he started the season in Single A, but he has been a hitting machine all season. The Jays have struggled to find consistency behind the plate and could benefit from someone that can actually handle the lumber behind the dish. Jansen has a .335 batting average through 98 games across the three Jays levels. He is currently in Triple A batting a stellar .417 in 15 games with the Bisons. He also has four doubles, a triple, and three homers. This while scoring eight runs and driving in eight and playing solid defense behind the plate.
Give Tim Mayza and Chris Rowley a full time shot in the Majors. Mayza has been on the bus between Buffalo and Toronto lately and we got a few solid starts out of Rowley before he was sent back as well. Mayza is the hard throwing lefty that the bullpen is going to need next season. Aaron Loup has had a great rebound season, but one can’t help but wonder if he can do it again. Mayza has some dominant stuff and could take the lefty role by storm if given the chance. He has allowed just a .216 opposing batting average in 19.1 innings allowing a 0.93 ERA in Triple A. He has only pitched 5.2 innings in the Majors and should be given a bigger sample size.
With all of the confusion on the mound the Blue Jays should include Chris Rowley down the stretch even if it requires a six man rotation. This will give him a few more starts for the season in the Majors which gives him the experience to carry into a position battle next Spring. There could be two open positions in the Jays rotation if no one new is brought in over the offseason. This could be valuable information even to plan for depth this coming season.
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