Blue Jays: Anthony Alford heading to minors to start season

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

Joe Biagini, Tim Mayza, and Billy McKinney have all been told by manager Charlie Montoyo that they’ve made the team out of spring training.

Despite putting up a .978 OPS with four home runs in 33 at-bats in spring training, outfielder Anthony Alford will start the season in the minor-leagues, Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo told The Toronto Star’s Laura Armstrong Tuesday morning.

Amstrong adds that lefty Tim Mayza and Joe Biagini will also be starting the season with the major-league team.

Additionally, catcher Reese McGuire, who slashed .143/.217/.238 this spring, will head to the minors, while Ryan Borucki will earn a spot on the big league roster, reports John Lott of The Athletic.

Finally, outfielder Billy McKinney will expectedly be making the team after going 9-for-34 in 16 games. In 2018, McKinney slashed .252/.320/.460 in 36 games after coming over from the Yankees in July.

More from Jays Journal

While expected, Alford’s demotion is still somewhat disappointing given his electric spring. Alford, along with fellow youngster Bo Bichette, led the team in homers.

Montoyo said that if Alford “keep[s] doing. what [he’s] doing”, the Blue Jays will “see [him] soon”. Montoyo also praised Alford for the changes he made at the plate this spring, per Armstrong.

McGuire, on the other hand, will likely refine his offence at Triple-A Buffalo before eventually rejoining the big club as a defensive-minded backup to Danny Jansen. Jansen will be paired with backstop Luke Maile to start the 2019 season.

Earlier this week, Bichette, Cavan Biggio, and pitcher Shawn Morimando were optioned to minor-league camp.

Next. Blue Jays: Has Dalton Pompey done enough to make the team?. dark

While McGuire might take a little longer to reach the game’s highest level, Alford might, as many have mentioned, be the first player to be called up should one of the team’s current outfielders falter or get injured. More to come.