This past week I took a look at the top drafted and developed positional players. Today, I’ll take a look at the top five drafted and developed starting pitchers in franchise history.
If you had not had a chance to read the top positional players click here to have a read and leave a comment.
#5 Marcus Stroman
Going into the 2012 draft the Blue Jays held two first-round picks, the second being at 22 which they used to draft Marcus Stroman. The scouting report on Stroman was although small in stature for a pitcher he was the most major league ready player in the draft. Stroman had also set the Duke University strikeout record and was previously named an All-Star in the Cape Cod League.
In the same year, he was drafted Stroman jumped all the way to AA after making seven appearances in Vancouver (Single-A Short Season). After spending the entire 2013 season in AA, he made seven appearances in AAA Buffalo in 2014 before being called up to Toronto which was less than two years after being drafted.
Stroman wound up pitching in Toronto for six years and posted a 47-45 record and a 3.76 ERA. Despite what appeared to be a long feud with Ross Atkins, Stroman was always a front of the rotation starting pitcher.
He cemented himself with a lot of Blue Jays fans as a hard-working determined player in 2015 when he tore his ACL and experts were saying he would miss the entire season. Stroman promised to be back in time for playoffs and he delivered. Just over six months after the injury he pitched four games down the stretch which helped the Blue Jays clinch their first AL East pennant since 1993.
Stroman was near perfection in those four starts posting a 4-0 record with a 1.67 ERA. He pitched back-to-back season with 200 innings in 2016 and 2017, and in the second of those seasons, he finished eighth in Cy Young Voting and won a Gold Glove.
In his final season in Toronto, Stroman was named to his first All-Star appearance while playing through an enormous amount of trade rumours. Just a few days before the trade deadline in 2019, Atkins would trade Stroman to the New York Mets for their top two pitching prospects in Simeon Woods Richardson and Anthony Kay.
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