2- Bo Bichette
Right now I’m sure that roughly half of you reading this are disagreeing with how I’ve ranked #1 and #2 in this list, but that’s not a bad thing at all. Having more than one future star on your roster is a very good problem to have.
The Blue Jays may have more than a handful of future stars, but it looks like they’ve got a pair of future superstars on their hands with the first being Bo Bichette. If the 21 year old had debuted in Toronto earlier this season, I think there’s a very good chance that he would not only be the Blue Jays’ Rookie of the Year, but would also be a leading candidate to win the award in the American League. However, we know that he didn’t come up until the end of July, which all but takes away his chances of winning the award for the top rookie in the AL.
The incredible start to his career at least has him in the conversation though, as he entered last night’s game slashing .307/.343/.578 with 10 home runs, 15 doubles, and 17 RBI 38 games played. Remarkably, he’s already earned a bWAR mark of 1.7 in those 38 games played, and a 1.4 fWAR rating.
He’s shown an ability to hit for power and for average, flashed some speedy (four stolen bases), and has been stronger on defence than I expected in the early part of his big league career. As he was progressing through the minor leagues I wondered if he would stick at shortstop, but that longer seems like a question at all. He’s even rated in the positive on defence according to Fangraphs, coming in at 1.4, which looks pretty good next to his offensive rating of 7.1.
The league has already started to adjust to Bichette after his record-breaking first month in the league, and pitchers will continue to make him work as he enters his sophomore campaign next year. That said, there’s only so many adjustments they can make, and Bichette is going to be a difficult out for a very long time.
At a time when this team was enduring another round of the rebuilding process, Bichette was and continues to be an exciting reason to keep tuning in to watch this team. If he had been around all season, I really do believe that he ends up as the AL Rookie of the Year. However, I still think there’s been one player more deserving of that title.