Letters of Intent
Winter League Update
By Jay Blue
Blue Jays from Away
Whew, now that the non-tender deadline has come and gone, let’s look around the world and see what Blue Jays affiliated players are up to!
Anthony Alford hasn’t been superb down in Australia with 20 strikeouts in 54 at bats, hitting .222/.333/.333. He does have an inside-the-park home run as well as a double and a triple to go with three stolen bases. L.B. Dantzler has been a little on the cold side, with his average dropping to .263 over the last little while. He’s got a .338 OBP and .351 slugging percentage with five doubles. Christian Lopes is doing much better of late with a .345/.383/.436 line with Canberra, adding five doubles and striking out just twice in 55 at bats. Finally, Jack Murphy continues to dominate the ABL, hitting .423/.448/.596 with three doubles and a pair of home runs in 52 at bats for the Cavalry.
Reliever Gregory Infante has had a couple of poor outings lately, giving up his first runs (two over his last two appearances) since the beginning of November. He now has a 2.70 ERA over 20 innings with a 1.45 WHIP and eight walks and 24 strikeouts. Casey Lawrence made his most recent start on Nov. 18 and allowed three runs over six innings. With US Thanksgiving last week, Lawrence is likely done for the year (many US players play in winter ball until Thanksgiving). He has a 3.40 ERA over 39 2/3 innings with a 1.36 WHIP, 20 strikeouts and seven walks. Arik Sikula went from the Arizona League to the Venezuelan League and didn’t seem affected by US Thanksgiving, pitching on November 27, 29 and 30. He has allowed one run in 3 1/3 innings, and still hasn’t struck out a batter yet. Tyler Ybarra hasn’t pitched since failing to retire a batter on November 19 and my guess would be that he’s done. He pitched just two innings, walking seven and striking out three.
The Dominican Winter League has a huge contingent of Blue Jays’ minor leaguers, beginning with Jonathan Diaz who continues to play. He’s hitting .263/.398/.337 in 95 at bats for Gigantes del Cibao and has two home runs and a double to his credit. Brad Glenn has been playing but hasn’t done well, going hitless in seven of his last eight games (sandwiched around a 2/4 performance with a home run on November 23). He’s hitting .239/.280/.310 overall with 20 strikeouts in 71 at bats. First baseman Matt Hague has been active, hitting .302/.353/.330 with Toros del Este, hitting three doubles in 106 at bats.
On the pitching side in the DWL, Austin Bibens-Dirkx, who re-upped with the Blue Jays recently, got lit up in his last start on November 28, throwing four innings and giving up two home runs for five earned runs. He’s got a 5.40 ERA over 10 innings with nine strikeouts and just two walks. Scott Copeland had better results in his last start, allowing one run over five innings and getting a no decision. Overall, he’s got a very nice 1.89 ERA with a 1.37 WHIP, seven walks and 14 strikeouts. 23-year-old fireballer Jimmy Cordero has been getting into plenty of action with Leones del Escogido and has struck out six in 6 1/3 innings, walking three and giving up one run. Liam Hendriks is 4-1 with Aguilas Cibaenas after throwing six shutout innings on Nov. 28. He’s got 32 strikeouts in 33 1/3 innings with just six walks. Bobby Korecky is also in the Dominican after a stint in Venezuela and has been lights out, not allowing a run in nine Dominican innings, earning four saves for Aguilas with seven strikeouts and just one walk.
In Mexico, the Blue Jays have one player still going with “Mighty Mouse” Jorge Flores putting up a .243/.304/.306 slash line in 144 at bats, hitting four doubles, a triple and a home run.
In the Puerto Rican Winter League, A.J. Jimenez has been active and on fire, hitting .375 in his last 10 games to give him a .361/.409/.508 slash line over 61 at bats with seven doubles and a triple. Dickie Joe Thon has been sluggish in limited opportunities at home in Puerto Rico, hitting just .167/.259/.167 in 24 at bats. Lefty John Anderson has ventured to Puerto Rico and followed up a rough outing in his first appearance with a much better one and has allowed two earned runs over 1 1/3 innings and hasn’t walked or struck out a batter yet.
If you like us here,“like” us on Facebook!
Who are these players? Find out in The 2014 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook, now available as an ebook at Smashwords.com for $7.99 US. You can purchase and preview the book at our Smashwords.com page!
The All-Star Break Supplement to the Minor League Handbook is also available at Smashwords.com for only $2 US! Get an update on how your favourite players have been doing this season as well as a report on the 2014 draft!
All photos are copyright Blue Jays from Away (2013-2014) and may not be used without permission.