The Toronto Blue Jays successfully launched their 21-year old rookie backstop, Alejandro Kirk, into the baseball universe.
It is not every day that a major league team promotes a catcher who has never played above Single-A during a pennant race, however, that is exactly what the Blue Jays have pulled out of their bag of tricks during this shortened pandemic season.
The aforementioned 21-year old made his MLB debut last night behind the dish and let me tell you, Alejandro Kirk did not look out of place. The kid was cool as a cucumber and on the same page with starter Robbie Ray for most of the night.
Kirk also contributed with the lumber notching his first MLB hit, walk and run scored during the Blue Jays 3-2 victory over the New York Mets. The emergence of Kirk may not bode well for Reese McGuire who has struggled on and off the field this season.
Kirk who had never played above High-A ball before last night has just 151 minor-league games under his belt. He is a career .315/.418/.500 hitter with 163 hits including 17 homers and 101 ribbies in 619 professional plate appearances.
The Blue Jays opted for Kirk’s services over veteran catcher Caleb Joseph who was designated for assignment. A puzzling move for a team currently in a playoff spot, however, the front office must feel Kirk can adequately handle the role over both Joseph and McGuire.
It will be interesting to see how much playing time Kirk will garner down the stretch especially seeing Danny Jansen is hitting under the Mendoza Line and has struggled offensively for much of the season.
If Kirk can handle MLB pitching, he may steal the lion’s share of the workload moving forward which is something out of the Twilight Zone when you consider Kirk has never had a single at-bat in Double-A.
The kid is an absolute spark plug and may become my new spirit animal before the season concludes. How can you not root for “Captain Kirk.”