Jays Journal's Top 30 Blue Jays Prospects - 2024 Midseason Update

Ricky Tiedemann
Ricky Tiedemann / Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports
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2. Orelvis Martinez- MLB (Previous Rank: 3)
22 y.o / RHH / 2B/3B

Martinez was recently suspended for 80 games due to PED use. He will be eligible to return later this season.

Orelvis has been in the prospect limelight since he was a 19-year-old tearing up Single-A. Still just 22,
Martinez will now embark on the most difficult chapter of his professional journey as he recently got the long-awaited call up to the big leagues. He's a simple yet enigmatic player, he hits bombs but he does not do a whole lot else. Fortunately, hitting balls over the fence is what gets you paid in this game. Few minor leaguers have hit more home runs than Martinez over the last few years. He mashed 28 in 2021, 30 in 2022, 28 in 2023, and he's looking to add to his total of 16 in 2024. Martinez gets to his power with his natural strength and consistent ability to lift the ball. He's a dead pull hitter who will at times sell out for power, trading barrel adaptability for damage.

When Martinez is at his best he's aggressive and ready to punish good pitches to hit but also willing to lay off the down and away breaking balls right-handed pitchers love to throw to him. Martinez's ability to connect with spin has been a consistent problem for him. It's something that he has significantly improved at over the last year but he'll still need to keep improving to hold his own against MLB quality breaking balls. In general, Martinez could stand to improve against right-handed pitching as his splits have been quite exaggerated over the last few years. The flip-side of this is that he has proven he can mash lefties. Despite his flaws in the batters box, Martinez is young and has been very productive as a hitter. He slugs and he makes better swing decisions than he gets credit for, most hitters who do those two things well are successful for a long time.

Defensively, Martinez has work to do. The Jays seem to like him at second base but he has struggled badly there at Triple-A. I still think he might be a better fit at third base than second base given his skillset. I wrote lots about Martinez's defense here. Martinez has the athletic tools and youth to improve defensively but he'll need to start soon.