With the COVID pandemic impacting and delaying the start of the 2020 campaign, there were some major changes made last season that the MLBA and MLBPA agreed on that are still impacting the game to this day. A few changes include the MLB draft being shortened to five rounds in 2020 and 20 rounds in 2021 to limit financial spending while the international free agent signing period was moved from July to January, meaning the Blue Jays will be able to sign any interested players just after the new year.
The reason the international free agent period is such an important avenue to highlight is how it has shaped up the current Blue Jays roster. One player who sticks out from the list is Vladimir Guerrero Jr., earning a $3.9 million signings bonus with top prospects Orelvis Martinez and Gabriel Moreno also signing via international free agency. This past free-agent period was highlighted by Manuel Beltre, who spent this summer in the Dominican Summer League, slashing .225/.391/.346 with two home runs and a .737 OPS.
Hit: 50 Power: 50 Run: 45 Arm: 50 Field: 55
Ranked #33 on the list, Meza hails from Mariara, Venezuela, the same country that produced Blue Jays top prospect Gabriel Moreno, who is also a catcher in the organization.
Known for his high baseball IQ, Meza possesses the qualities one looks for in a young catcher. He has a quick catch and throw rate and his blocking ability has scouts believing he can stick at the position as he continues to develop, with the 17-year-old already standing at 5’11” and 185 pounds and looking to continue growing into his frame.
The Blue Jays are favoured to sign one top international free agent this offseason, catcher Luis Meza from Mariara, Venezuela.
A right-handed hitter, Meza uses this frame to hit the ball across the entire diamond and is known as a contact type hitter with some minor pop off the bat, something that will most likely develop as he grows into his frame. He currently trains at KPL Academy in Venezuela.
Not too much is known about Meza right now nor is there a lot of video to digest, mostly due to the COVID pandemic, but there should be some increased news and video as the international free-agent period draws closer.
If Meza does sign with the Blue Jays, he joins a pretty crowded catching corps that already boasts Danny Jansen, Alejandro Kirk, and Reese McGuire at the Major League level with Moreno looking to make his debut sometime in the near future.
Fortunately, Meza is still years away from any big league promotion, meaning the club has some time to figure out the catching situation if the Venezualan product comes knocking on the big league doors just like Moreno.