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Stock Up, Stock Down for Toronto Blue Jays' Top 10 Prospects for Week 16

Mohammad ArshadCorrespondent IJuly 22, 2014

Stock Up, Stock Down for Toronto Blue Jays' Top 10 Prospects for Week 16

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    USA TODAY Sports

    2014 has been a turbulent year for the Toronto Blue Jays up to this point. Ironically, it has also been an up-and-down season for several of the team’s top prospects in the minor leagues.

    While some players in Toronto's farm system that were on the fringe previously have emerged as bona fide prospects this year, other players have regressed and seen their stocks significantly drop.

    The 2014 MLB draft has also thrown the Blue Jays’ previous top-10 prospects list in flux, as some of the team’s newly drafted players have altered the organizational depth chart. This led me to create a new, unofficial list for the purpose of this article.

    With that being said, let’s take a look at how Toronto’s current top 10 prospects did during Week 16 (July 13-July 20) and if their overall stocks rose or dropped based on their performances.

     

    *No. 3 prospect Jeff Hoffman has not played this season and is not on this list.

No. 11 Prospect: D.J. Davis, Outfielder, Class A Lansing

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    2014 Stats

    86 G, 360 AB, .214/.270/.331, 7 HR, 40 RBI, 44 R, 11 2B, 5 3B, 10 SB, 13 CS

     

    Overview

    2014 has been a season to forget for D.J. Davis. The outfielder has hit just .214 for Class A Lansing, his OBP has fallen below .300 and he’s struck out in nearly 34 percent of his at-bats.

    Numbers at the plate aside, Davis has also struggled to steal bases despite having plus speed and being one of the fastest players in the entire minor leagues. The 19-year-old has 10 steals but has also been caught stealing 13 times.

    Davis’ struggles continued this past week, as he had just four hits in 26 at-bats.

    If there’s one positive thing to take from Davis’ season, it’s his power numbers. After hitting a home run last week, the left-handed hitter now has seven long balls in 86 games played.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    6 G, 4-for-26, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 3 R, 1 SB

     

    Stock

    Down

No. 10 Prospect: Sean Reid-Foley, Right-Handed Pitcher, GCL Blue Jays

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    2014 Stats

    1-0 W/L, 2 G (1 GS), 6.75 ERA, 2.2 IP

     

    Overview

    Sean Reid-Foley was selected by the Blue Jays with the 49th overall pick of the 2014 MLB draft. This was a surprising development considering that MLB.com had ranked the right-hander No. 18 on its list of top players heading into the draft.

    After signing with Toronto, Reid-Foley began his professional career with the Gulf Coast League Blue Jays. He has pitched just 2.2 innings up to this point, giving up two runs and striking out three batters.

    The 18-year-old Reid-Foley features a fastball that tops out at 95 mph. His slider is also considered to be a plus pitch.

    Toronto will likely bring along Reid-Foley slowly this season. But it’s good to see him already getting his professional career started so quickly.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    Did Not Pitch

     

    Stock

    Neutral

No. 9 Prospect: Alberto Tirado, Right-Handed Pitcher, Class A Lansing

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    2014 Stats

    1-2 W/L, 20 G, 10 GS, 5.76 ERA, 54.2 IP (Alternating Starts)

     

    Overview

    While Alberto Tirado has one of the most electric arms in the entire Blue Jays’ farm system, he has struggled to translate his stuff into the box score this season.

    The right-hander posted a 6.30 ERA in 40 innings pitched at Class A Lansing. On the bright side, things have been a little better for Tirado after he moved to Class A-Short Season Vancouver, and his ERA there is 4.30 in 14.2 innings pitched.

    Like a lot of other young pitchers in the minor leagues, Tirado’s biggest issue has been his command. The 19-year-old has issued 53 walks in 54.2 innings pitched this season, averaging nearly a walked batter per inning.

    This trend continued last week, as Tirado surrendered four walks in four innings pitched. He did manage to limit the damage by giving up only one earned run and striking out six hitters, though.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    3 G, 4 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 4 BB, 6 K

     

    Stock

    Neutral

No. 8 Prospect: Mitch Nay, Third Baseman, Class A Lansing

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    2014 Stats

    94 G, 366 AB, .279/.337/.372, 2 HR, 47 RBI, 46 R, 22 2B, 3 3B, 4 SB, 2 CS

     

    Overview

    Mitch Nay has been putting together a very decent season at Class A Lansing this year.

    After hitting .273 with 34 RBI and 33 runs scored during the first 65 games of the season, the third baseman was named to the Midwest League’s Eastern Division All-Star team.

    The one concern with Nay has been his lack of power. After hitting six home runs in just 64 games with the Bluefield Blue Jays of the Appalachian League last year, he only has two long balls in 94 games played this year.

    Last week was a rough one for Nay, as he had just four hits in 29 at-bats and struck out seven times.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    7 G, 4-for-29, 1 BB, 4 R, 1 2B

     

    Stock

    Down

No. 7 Prospect: Franklin Barreto, Shortstop, Class A-Short Season Vancouver

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    2014 Stats

    36 G, 144 AB, .326/.405/.486, 1 HR, 33 RBI, 32 R, 12 2B, 4 3B, 11 SB, 3 CS

     

    Overview

    After signing with Toronto as an international free agent in 2012, Franklin Barreto has been steadily making a name for himself in the minor leagues. As his numbers show, he’s having an exceptional 2014 season.

    Barreto isn’t particularly big and only stands at 5’9”, but his bat speed combined with a compact swing allows him to make solid contact with the ball. It’s worth noting that the shortstop is just 18 years old and still has plenty of room to grow.

    Aside from his bat, the most exciting aspect of Barreto’s game is his speed. He’s one of the fastest players in Toronto’s farm system and has the potential to be an above-average base stealer.

    Barreto absolutely crushed opposing pitchers last week, piling up 13 hits in 25 at-bats and driving in a whopping 15 runs in just 8 games.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    8 G, 13-for-35, 1 BB, 1 HR, 15 RBI, 12 R, 2 B, 3 3B, 2 SB, 1 CS

     

    Stock

    Up

No. 6 Prospect: Max Pentecost, Catcher, Class A-Short Season Vancouver

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    Phil Sears/Associated Press

    2014 Stats

    12 G, 46 AB, .391 BA, 8 RBI, 10 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 1 SB, 2 CS

     

    Overview

    Max Pentecost is a new name on this list. The catcher was selected by Toronto with the 11th overall pick during the 2014 MLB draft.

    After signing with the Blue Jays, the 21-year-old made his professional debut with the Gulf Coast League Blue Jays and proceeded to hit .364 in six games. This earned him a promotion last week to Class A-Short Season Vancouver, where he’s currently hitting .417 with five RBI and eight runs scored in six games.

    The gaudy numbers suggest that Pentecost is likely to be promoted again soon. If he keeps this pace up, he has a chance to quickly climb up the minor league system and become one of the first players from the 2014 draft class to play in the majors.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    6 G, 10-for-24, 2 BB, 1 2B, 1 3B, 5 RBI, 8 R, 1 SB, 1 CS

     

    Stock

    Up

No. 5 Prospect: Dalton Pompey, Outfielder, Double-A New Hampshire

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    2014 Stats

    89 G, 344 AB, .299/.382/.453, 8 HR, 42 RBI, 60 R, 15 2B, 7 3B, 34 SB, 4 CS

     

    Overview

    Few people had heard of Dalton Pompey heading into the 2014 season, but now he’s quickly become one of the most recognizable names in the Blue Jays’ farm system.

    The 21-year-old hit .319/.397/.471 in 70 games for Class A-Advanced Dunedin before being promoted to Double-A New Hampshire.

    Like most prospects, Pompey has struggled following his promotion, hitting just .209 in 20 games at Double-A. He did start to come around last week, however, getting seven hits in 16 at-bats over four games.

    With his blend of speed and the ability to get on base, Pompey projects to be a dynamic hitter at the top of the lineup. He’s also a defensive force in centre field and won the Gold Glove Award for being the top defensive centre fielder in the minor leagues last season.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    4 G, 7-for-16, 2 BB, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 4 R, 2 2B, 3 SB

     

    Stock

    Up

No. 4 Prospect: Roberto Osuna, Right-Handed Pitcher, Gulf Coast League Blue Jays

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    2014 Stats

    0-0 W/L, 1 GS, 0.00 ERA, 1 IP

     

    Overview

    Roberto Osuna finally made his long-awaited 2014 debut on July 8, pitching one scoreless inning and striking out two batters.

    The right-hander was making his return from Tommy John surgery that had limited him just 10 starts last year and caused him to miss a huge chunk of the 2014 season as well.

    Despite missing so much time, Osuna’s upside remains very high. The 19-year-old already possesses a plus fastball that sits in the mid-90s. His slider and changeup also have the potential to be plus pitches in the future.

    Osuna did not pitch last week and is expected to be eased along slowly this season. But he’s ready to continue his ascent up the organization’s depth chart once more.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    Did Not Pitch

     

    Stock

    Neutral

No. 2 Prospect: Daniel Norris, Left-Handed Pitcher, Double-A New Hampshire

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    2014 Stats

    7-1 W/L, 18 GS, 2.61 ERA, 86.1 IP

     

    Overview

    Daniel Norris is learning firsthand how difficult it is to maintain success while moving up the minor league system.

    After posting a 1.22 ERA in 13 starts for Class A-Advanced Dunedin this season, the left-hander was promoted to Double-A New Hampshire, where he has struggled to recapture his previous success.

    In five starts for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, Norris has an unsightly 7.20 ERA. After giving up no home runs at the Class A level, he’s already surrendered four long balls in just 20 innings pitched in Double-A.

    The 21-year-old lasted just three innings and was shelled for eight earned runs in his only start last week. This is likely just an adjustment period for Norris, and his upside obviously remains very high, but Blue Jays fans that were hoping to see him make rapid progress toward the major leagues need to stay more patient.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    1 GS, 3 IP, 8 ER, 8 H, 0 BB, 5 K

     

    Stock

    Down

No. 1 Prospect: Aaron Sanchez, Right-Handed Pitcher, Triple-A Buffalo

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    USA TODAY Sports

    2014 Stats

    3-7 W/L, 22 G (20 GS), 3.95 ERA, 100.1 IP

     

    Overview

    Despite having a bit of a down year in the minors, Aaron Sanchez remains the Blue Jays’ top prospect. He arguably has the best stuff in the organization and still has all the makings of being a front-line starter in the major leagues.

    Command has been the biggest problem for the right-hander this season. He’s walked 57 batters in 100.1 innings pitched between Double-A New Hampshire and Triple-A Buffalo.

    According to Jeff Blair of Sportsnet (via Twitter), Toronto has moved Sanchez to the bullpen in the minors, and he is a potential candidate for a call-up to the major leagues soon as a reliever.

    This move would allow the Blue Jays to control the 22-year-old’s innings for the rest of the season. It would also give the team’s struggling relief corps a boost.

    Pitching in a relief role last week, Sanchez gave up one run and had two strikeouts in two innings of work.

     

    Last Week’s Stats

    2 G, 2 IP, 1 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 2K

     

    Stock

    Neutral

     

    *All stats are from MILB.comStats are current entering play on July 21.

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