Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. is often overlooked on the team’s depth chart, however, Gurriel has the ability to be an offensive catalyst with unlimited potential if he can remain healthy.
Over the past two seasons, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. has only played in 149 games for the Blue Jays due to an assortment of minor injuries. Gurriel’s numbers over that period are impressive, to say the least, the 26-year old sports a career .279/.320/.499 slash line with 31 home runs, 85 runs batted in and a 1.8 WAR.
Gurriel has the potential to be the straw that stirs the Blue Jays offensive drink although the likes of Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio tend to garner more of the headlines. If healthy, he can be one of the premier offensive talents in the league.
The true test will be if Gurriel can cut down on the strikeout total that has plagued him a little thus far as he has whiffed 145 times in 606 career plate appearances. Interestingly enough, Steamer projects Gurriel to hit 27 homers in 2020 while they have Vladdy swatting 25, Bo 22 and Cavan just 20 homers.
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The native of Cuba comes with bloodlines of his own as his father was a very well respected professional player in Cuba and his older brother Yuli Gurriel has spent the last four seasons with the Astros.
Gurriel has already overcome an assortment of injuries, a demotion, and a position change to left field during his first two seasons north of the border. This spring, Gurriel can go into Grapefruit League action rest assured he will be playing the outfield as the team has abandoned the prospects of him playing infield moving forward.
Don’t sleep on Gurriel this season folks, he may end up with the best numbers of any of the talent names garnering the spotlight. This kid can play and will have a breakout campaign in 2020.