Blue Jays: Make or break spring for Anthony Alford

SARASOTA, FL- MARCH 09: Anthony Alford
SARASOTA, FL- MARCH 09: Anthony Alford /

With spring training in full swing, Toronto Blue Jays prospect Anthony Alford finds himself in a precarious situation in what may be deemed as a make or break spring for the aspiring major leaguer.

The talented outfielder has been passed time and time again on the Blue Jays outfield depth chart due to an assortment of unfortunate injuries. Anthony Alford now finds himself on the outside looking in and in all likelihood destined for Triple-A Buffalo at the conclusion of spring training.

Last spring, Alford came into camp poised to battle Teoscar Hernandez for the starting left field job, however, after an impressive start, his spring was railroaded by a hamstring injury. The outfielder would spend the majority of the season in the minors minus 13 games with the big club.

In his 13 games with the Blue Jays in 2018, Alford struggled offensively hitting .105/.190/.105 with two hits in 21 plate appearances. In Buffalo, the 24-year old hit an uninspiring, 240/.312/.344 with five home runs and 17 stolen bases in 105 contests with the Bisons.

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Alford is still an intriguing prospect with the ability to be a 5-tool player but now he finds himself needing to leapfrog the likes of Hernandez, Billy McKinney, and even Dalton Pompey in the battle for playing time in the Jays outfield.

Thus far this spring, Alford is 1-7 with a single and two strikeouts in Grapefruit League action playing for new manager Charlie Montoyo. Alford needs to turn some heads this spring and hope to force the Blue Jays hand.

Alford is still the 11th ranked prospect organizationally by and top outfield prospect on the rankings. The former football star has all the makings of an everyday major league player but needs to cut down on the swing and misses. Last season, Alford fanned 112 times in 417 plate appearances.

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In 2019, Alford needs to remain healthy and prove he can have quality, productive at-bats on a consistent basis, if he can do this, his number will eventually be called. If he doesn’t he may find himself playing for a new organization sooner than later.