Last time, I wrote part 3 of the Toronto Blue Jays top 30 Prospect list. On it there were some exceptional talents with a lot of potential to become solid big-league contributors. As we get closer to the top of the list, these names will become both, more noticeable, and also more valuable. Some may even be on the brink of cracking a major league roster, or possibly becoming a trade chip to land a substantial piece in the future.
To read the first 3 parts of this series, please click here:
15. Conner Greene
22 year-old Conner Greene had a tumultuous season at best. Still blessed with a massive fastball, Greene has the potential to become so much more than what he has shown over the past few seasons. The issues began piling up early in the year. He saw regression in his already inconsistent secondary pitches as well as having an incredibly hard time throwing strikes. Neither of these issues are new to Greene, but the fact that he has shown almost no improvement over the past 2 seasons is alarming.
He has a triple digits fastball, solid movement across multiple planes with it as well. I am hoping that this is the season we see Greene transition to the bullpen. I don’t see his secondary stuff becoming consistent enough to fool hitters 2 or 3 times through the order, but with that heater he has the ability and specific skill set to become a truly elite back-end of the bullpen arm. I hate to transition a elite arm to the pen at 22 years-old but in this case the writing is on the wall.
14. Ryan Borucki
After talking about the elite arm and supplemental issues of a guy like Conner Greene, it only makes sense to speak about his exact opposite in Ryan Borucki.
Borucki is a rail thin left handed pitcher with an average fastball. He is not the type of prospect who gets fans out of their seats, or excites MiLB chatter with his stuff. All Ryan Borucki does is dominate minor league hitters with his “average” stuff. He has a great mix of pitches and phenomenal command, that along with his naturally deceptive delivery give him all of the pieces to become an excellent middle of the rotation MLB starter.
Last off-season, when the Jays added him to their 40-man roster many people were confused, and I spent a large amount of time explaining that, in my opinion, this kid was a legitimate prospect. He has even surpassed my expectations for him. Depending on what the Jays are able to do this off-season, I wouldn’t be overly surprised if the young lefty ends up winning the fifth starter battle out of spring training.
13. Eric Pardinho
The very young Eric Pardinho exploded on the scene at 15 years old for team Brazil at the WBC. He dominated professional hitters in a brief stint and shot up international prospect boards everywhere. When the Blue Jays were able to sign him, many viewed him as the top teenage arm available on the market.
Having just turned 17 years old with a strong frame, a 96 MPH fastball and well developed secondary stuff, Pardinho will remind many Blue Jays fans of a young Roberto Osuna. He will likely start this season in the very low minor leagues, but look for Pardinho to shoot up prospect lists this season.
12. Danny Jansen
.323/.400/.484/.884 with 37 extra base hits and more walks than strikeouts, for a 22 year old across 3 levels of the high minors….. Say hello to the Blue Jays catcher of the future, and possibly the present as well.
Nothing more needs to be said about this big, strong, and defensively improving Illinois native.
11. Richard Urena
Richard Urena received a taste of MLB life in September and performed well. Despite having a hard year offensively last season, Urena shows potential with his bat, consistency is his major issue. Urena is surprisingly strong and sneaky athletic with strong hands, and when he barrels up the ball it explodes off of his bat.
He will have a full season in Buffalo to iron out some offensive flaws, but at 21 years old and with potentially the highest-end defensive ceiling in the entire system, Urena looks to have all the tools to become a MLB regular sooner rather than later.
About Marc Nolan:
Marc Nolan is a Blogger, Public Speaker, and Entrepreneur originally from Campbell River, BC. Marc currently resides in Port Hope, ON with his Wife and two sons. He has always been involved in sports. A former College Baseball player, current coach and founder of the Northumberland Baseball Academy, Marc has invested his entire life to the game he loves. He has now been able to transition that passion into public speaking and journalism.
Despite the fact he has no formal training in the field, Marc has found ways to get exposure in the industry through hard work and dedication to what he loves. Currently, he operates a personal Blog (www.WestysWorld.com), writes for the LastWordOnBaseball. Hopefully, in the near future, will be starting his own personal Minor League Baseball Podcast. He is very active on Social Media. You can reach Marc with any questions, on Twitter, @MarcWestyNolan