Blue Jays: Breaking down the top 30 prospects list
The Toronto Blue Jays’ top 30 prospects list was unveiled earlier this week and their team ranking has lowered for the second straight time.
With Alek Manoah, Nate Pearson, and Alejandro Kirk now expected to be key members of a potential World Series-contending team, this wasn’t wholly unexpected. Also, the trading of former top prospects Austin Martin and Simeon Woods-Richardson last July was sure to affect their position.
The Jays are a team that’s ready to win now, so fans shouldn’t fret. Here’s a look at some of the team’s top 30 prospects via MLB.com.
Blue Jays Top 30 prospects
Overall, the Jays rank 21st in farm system rankings, down from 14th in the midseason version and 7th in the 2021 preseason edition. It was a predictable drop but the team still has a talented mix of young players, especially in the middle infielder category.
Toronto can claim three top 100 prospects, and by this point most fans are familiar with catcher Gabriel Moreno. The 22-year-old stands a good chance to make his MLB debut this season, and has plus-hit tools, a strong arm, and developing power.
Orelvis Martinez has rocketed up prospect rankings, into the team’s #2 position and in the top 40 overall. He’s shown off his power with a couple of long balls in Spring Training and will likely start the season in Double-A New Hampshire.
Jordan Groshans, like Martinez, started his career as a shortstop but has gotten reps at the third base position too. It’s interesting to note that one of these two will probably be ready by the time the Jays have to make a decision on Matt Chapman, who will be a free agent after the 2023 season.
Overall, nine of the Jays’ top sixteen prospects are middle infielders and some of those players may make their big league debuts elsewhere. The other position group that is featured prominently amongst the minor leaguers is right-handed pitchers.
Thirteen of the team’s top 30 prospects are righties, but the list contains just one left-hander. However, that one lefty, Ricky Tiedemann, is the Blue Jays’ top overall pitching prospect. The 2021 third round pick could make his MLB debut as soon as 2024.
Blue Jays prospects sooner than later?
Despite being in the bottom 10 of the team farm system rankings, the Jays do feature some players that could make their debuts shortly, perhaps this season. Obviously, Moreno is the most well-known in that group, but others could emerge.
Otto Lopez did make his Blue Jays debut in 2021, spending a few days with the team and getting into a single game. He’s a speedy middle infielder/outfielder who could find himself on the big club if injuries impact the roster.
Bowden Francis was acquired along with Trevor Richards in the Rowdy Tellez trade with Milwaukee last year. Francis is 25, should start the season in Buffalo, and will be an early call-up candidate. Another name to watch, Joey Murray’s pitches feature a high spin rate and he could find himself in the majors if the bullpen falters.
Blue Jays prospects: On the horizon
Manuel Beltre is a 17-year-old shortstop set to make his major league debut likely no earlier than 2025. Luis Meza, also 17, is a catcher whose current ETA in the majors is 2028. By then, the organization should have a good idea about what they have at that position. Finally, Yhoangel Aponte is a rare outfielder among the youngsters, who we could see around 2026.
Having prospect depth at certain positions can be a strength, or used as a trade chip. This will be an important year of development for these young players.