I’m not talking about Vladimir Guerrero Jr. when I mention the “kids” right now, because we already know that a strained oblique has nullified the option of him starting the year with the team, even if it probably wasn’t going to happen anyway. That said, the Blue Jays will have to make room for him when he’s eventually healthy and promoted.
I include this one mostly because I feel like a lot of you would ask why I neglected it if I didn’t, so here goes.
I don’t think that either Bo Bichette or Anthony Alford are going to make the team to start the year.
I’m not saying that they SHOULDN’T, I’m saying that I don’t think they will. I’m more than aware of how they have performed this Spring, and I’d love the idea of seeing both of them in the every day lineup to start this rebuild off on an exciting note.
When it comes to Bichette, there are a few things working against him here. First, he would have to be added to the 40 man roster in order to make the team, and without a few injuries I just can’t see the Jays cutting other potentially valuable pieces in order to make that happen. They have stated that they’re committed to letting him get experience at the Triple-A level before he’s promoted to the big leagues, and I’m sure they’ll commit to that plan regardless of how well he performs in the pre-season. They would also have to start his service time clock if he makes the team now, and I don’t know that they’ll do that.
Alford is a different story, and I could be wrong about him when it comes to making the team. That said, I feel like playing every single day would be the highest priority for the former two-sport athlete, and having him on the big league roster may not be the easiest way to make that happen right now. Sure, you could argue that he should take Pillar’s job, but I can’t see the Blue Jays making that move unless they’re trading the latter, which doesn’t seem terribly likely at the moment.
Grichuk is going to play every day and be a central part of the offence, and I’m sure the Blue Jays want Teoscar Hernandez getting a lot of reps in the outfield too. There’s also McKinney and Pompey, as we’ve already discussed.
Again, I’d agree with you if you were arguing that Alford’s (and Bichette’s) performance warranted starting at the highest level this year, I just don’t think it’s going to happen. I do think we’ll see Alford sooner than later though, and hopefully Bichette won’t be far behind, although it could be 2020 before we see him make the final leap. You know, contract control and all that jazz.