Blue Jays: Derek Fisher Making Statement Prior to Season Start
With just a few days left until the 2020 MLB shortened season starts, there is still a battle for the fourth outfield position, and Derek Fisher may have a leg up.
The player that made great strides Tuesday night in securing a spot on the active roster was Derek Fisher. With the Blue Jays playing their first of two exhibition games before the season opens on Friday, Fisher was given the start in left field. While many fans have already given up on the last year’s trade acquisition, the mindset for many may have changed.
The game started off pretty similar to Fisher’s 2020 season with the Blue Jays, as he grounded into a double play and struck out in his first two at-bats. Things turned around for the soon to be 27-year old in the seventh inning as he took a 1-1 Matt Barnes pitch over the right field wall to bring the Blue Jays within one run. In the ninth inning with the game tied, Fisher absolutely unloaded a 2-2 pitch well into the seats past the right field bullpen off of Ryan Brasier. The two home runs helped secure an 8-6 win for the Blue Jays.
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Fisher is competing against Anthony Alford and Billy McKinney, with the first two being out of minor league options. McKinney did play some first base last night and Alford got some relief time in the outfield both went 0 for 1.
Fisher, who was a former first round pick of the Houston Astros, came with a lot of hype that he had lot of raw power and talent. Fisher had three consecutive seasons of 20+ home runs when he climbed the Astros’ minor league organization, including 2017, when he hit 21 home runs in just 84 games and batted .318; however that has not translated to the Major League level. He has a career .191 average over 152 big league games, and batted just .161 over the 40 games in a Toronto Blue Jays uniform, that included three blooper reel errors in the outfield. If Fisher can gain some confidence and get close to the level many scouts suggested, he could become a difference maker.
Game Notes from the exhibition games
Rowdy Tellez who appears to have been assigned to be the back-up first basemen and designated hitter shined Tuesday night going 2 for 4 with a double and an absolute towering home run. Top pitching prospect Nate Pearson struggled in the first inning allowing four runs, however was able to set in, as he pitched into the four inning without allowing another run while striking out five. Wednesday’s game was shortened by weather, but not before Vladimir Guerrero Jr. it a towering home run over the Green Monster at Fenway Park. Fisher went 0-2 with a strikeout on Wednesday, but will look to wipe that away and carry momentum into the regular season.