Blue Jays Top 100 Players in Franchise History (11-15)

TORONTO - 1987: Jesse Barfield of the Toronto Blue Jays bats during an MLB game at Exhibition Stadium in Toronto, Canada. Barfield played for the Blue Jays from 1981-1989. (Photo by Ron Vesely/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
TORONTO - 1987: Jesse Barfield of the Toronto Blue Jays bats during an MLB game at Exhibition Stadium in Toronto, Canada. Barfield played for the Blue Jays from 1981-1989. (Photo by Ron Vesely/MLB Photos via Getty Images) /

Spring Training has just a few days left, and we’ll be getting near the end of our look at the Top 100 Blue Jays in team history. In the first instalments so far, I looked at players ranked 16-100 and today I’ll look at the next five that just missed out on the top ten.  This is opinion based off of career stats with the club and accomplishments.

15. Ernie Whitt (1977-1989)

The Blue Jays selected Ernie Whitt in the expansion draft as a 24-year old and he would become the best catcher in franchise history.  After the expansion draft, Whitt would spend three more years developing before becoming a regular in 1980, and was known as one of the best at his position in all of baseball for a decade.

Defensively speaking, Whitt would rarely allow a passed ball while throwing out 33% of would be base stealers.  At the plate, Whitt would hit double digit home runs in eight consecutive seasons, including19 twice.  He would be named to the All-Star Game in 1985, the season the Blue Jays first made the playoffs.  His best season was 1987 when he hit 24 doubles, 19 home runs and 75 RBI.  He was a hard batter to strike out as he averaged more than 11 plate appearances between strike outs.

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Whitt was traded to the Atlanta Braves at the end of the 1989 season to make way for Pat Borders.  No catcher in franchise history has hit more doubles or home runs and his 131 round trippers is good for tenth in club history.

14. Lloyd Moseby (1980-1989)

The Blue Jays used the second overall pick in the 1978 MLB Draft to select Lloyd Moseby from Oakland High School.  Less than two years later, and at 20 years of age, Moseby debuted for the club and after a rookie season in right field he would be the starting centre fielder for the next decade.

Moseby never won a Gold Glove, but was commonly known as a top defensive player.  At the plate, Moseby won the Silver Slugger award in 1983 when he broke out offensively.  That season he hit 31 doubles, 18 home runs and 81 RBI while posting a slash line of .315/.376/.496.  He would also go on to have 30+ stolen bases in five consecutive seasons and once led the league in triples with 15 in 1984.  There was also the time he stole second, then first and then second again on the same play.

Moseby would leave in free agency after the 1989 season and he still leads the franchise in stolen bases (255) and is second in triples (60).

13. Jim Clancy (1977-1988)

The Blue Jays selected Jim Clancy as a 21-year old during their expansion draft in 1976.  He would spend part of the next season in AA, however would be called up mid-season and became a regular in the rotation for 12 seasons.  During his time in Toronto he finished in double digits in wins on eight occasions, including 15 games three different times.

Clancy would become an All-Star in 1982, which was a season he finished with a 16-14 record and a 3.71 ERA, while leading the league in starts with 40.  Clancy was a durable workhorse as he finished with at least 219 innings pitched six times.  He would leave in free agency after the 1988 season with a 128 wins in a Blue Jays uniform, which sits third in franchise history.

12. Pat Hentgen (1991-1999)

Pat Hentgen was selected in the fifth round of the 1986 MLB Draft and took seven years to develop in the minor leagues.  After a shaky rookie season in 1992 out of the bullpen, Hentgen became a star when he was moved to the starting rotation in 1993.  While in the Blue Jays rotation, Hentgen would become an All-Star three times and led the league in complete games, shutouts, and innings pitched in consecutive seasons (1996-1997).

Hentgen became the Blue Jays first Cy Young award winner in 1996 when he posted a 20-10 record and 3.22 ERA.  He would finish with double digits in wins every season as a starting pitcher in a Blue Jays uniform.  Hentgen was not used during the 1992 Postseason, however started during the 1993 World Series.  He would receive the ball for Game 3 of the series and went on to throw six innings and allowing just one earned run. That game helped the Blue Jays take a 2-1 series lead, a lead in which they wouldn’t give up.

Toronto would trade Hentgen, along with Paul Spoljaric to the St. Louis Cardinals after the 1999 season for three players who did not amount to much for the club.  Hentgen is just one of five pitchers in team history with 100-wins.

11. Jesse Barfield (1981-1989)

The best selection the Blue Jays made during their first MLB draft was taking Jesse Barfield in the ninth round.  Barfield would first play in Toronto as a September call-up in 1981, which led to him becoming the starting right fielder the following year and for the next decade.

Barfield was known as having one of the best arms in all of baseball, which was highlighted with consecutive seasons of 20+ outfield assists in 1985 and 1986.  The only reason Barfield did not have more assists was that players would rarely challenge his arm and they would rather settle for a single, when in most other cases they would have ended up with a double.  Just the fear of being thrown out at the plate saved countless runs scored by opponents.  Because of his defensive ability he also won the Gold Glove twice in Toronto.

Barfield’s best season came in 1986, a year he was named to the All-Star Game while winning the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Award.  At the plate he smashed 35 doubles, 40 home runs and 108 RBI which led to him finishing fifth in AL MVP voting.

Early in the 1989 season, the Blue Jays traded Barfield to the New York Yankees in a straight up trade for Al Leiter.  Barfield currently sits fourth in WAR (29.5) by positional players and seventh in home runs (179).

Next. Top 100 in franchise history (#11-15). dark

In the next segment we will look at some power hitters and a Terminator.