Ranking the top 10 most important young players to the Blue Jays’ future

Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. / Mark Blinch/GettyImages
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No. 3 - RHP Alek Manoah

Manoah was the Jays’ first round pick, 11th overall from the 2019 MLB Draft. Little did the Jays know that he would fly through their minor league system in his development with just 35 professional innings under his belt and make his major league debut in 2021 with the big club. From there, he has not looked back as he showed great composure and pure dominance during his rookie year, and had an even more impressive sophomore year in 2022, becoming an AL Cy Young finalist in just his second year in MLB.

However, 2023 has been a whole different story for Manoah, and his struggles have been nothing like he experienced before in his pro career. His ERA of 5.53 and WHIP of 1.79 is almost double his usual career averages, and has displayed inconsistency in his control and command by walking 38 batters in just 53.2 innings. Nevertheless, the Jays expect Manoah to eventually work out of it, as being the ace of the staff, his stuff is too good for him to be stuck in the rut for a long time. In addition, he is definitely the first homegrown, ace-caliber, superstar pitcher since the late Roy Halladay in the early 2000s, so the Jays will definitely do everything in their power to get Manoah back on track so that he can lead them once again to success this year and for years to come.