Blue Jays: Five Underrated Players To Watch During Spring Training

TORONTO, ON - APRIL 12: Richard Urena #7 of the Toronto Blue Jays warms up moments before the start of their MLB game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre on April 12, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - APRIL 12: Richard Urena #7 of the Toronto Blue Jays warms up moments before the start of their MLB game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre on April 12, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
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TORONTO, CANADA – JULY 18: The front logo decal on the batting helmet of Jose Reyes #7 of the Toronto Blue Jays before the start of MLB game action against the Texas Rangers on July 18, 2014 at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, CANADA – JULY 18: The front logo decal on the batting helmet of Jose Reyes #7 of the Toronto Blue Jays before the start of MLB game action against the Texas Rangers on July 18, 2014 at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /

SS Otto Lopez

Otto Lopez was an interesting player this offseason.  He became Rule 5 eligible as just a 21 year old, which is something you don’t normally see.  Because of this, the Jays were forced to add him to their 40-man roster, in order to protect him from the Rule 5 draft.

Lopez forced the Jays to add him to their 40-man because of his production in the minors.  In 2019, he hit .324 in 108 games in A ball at just 20 years old.  Lopez doesn’t bring a ton of power to the table, with his 40 power grade and only 14 home runs across 217 minor league games, but he is a guy who puts the bat on the ball and makes consistent contact, which is something that the Jays lack at the big league level.

Lopez also provides defensive versatility, which is something that this Blue Jays coaching staff loves.  He has primarily taken reps at shortstop, but has also played second, third, left field, centre field and right field during his time in the minors.  Being able to play so many positions definitely raises his value in the eyes of Blue Jays management and could help him reach the big leagues sooner rather than later.

Along with being an advanced hitter and having positional versatility, Lopez is also a plus runner too, swiping 41 bags in his 217 games played.

Lopez just turned 22 in October and hasn’t played past A ball so it’s unlikely that he will make the team right out of Spring Training.  He’ll get a shot to play during the spring and is someone who I would watch out for as a good camp from him could raise his chances of being a mid-season call up.

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