Apparently Keith Law wasn’t done with writing about the Jays when at the end of last week he told us that Kyle Drabek seemed to be taking well to the mechanical changes the club has got him to make, and that Dustin McGowan looked like ““a shadow of what he used to be.” He also took in a game featuring the Jays and Phillies minor leaguers on Friday, providing some detailed notes at ESPN.com (Insider Only), the most interesting of which– for our purposes– feature Aaron Sanchez.

Law is upfront about how much he likes Sanchez– something we’ve seen in his recent top prospects lists. In 2012 he listed him as the organization’s second-best pitching prospect, behind Drew Hutchison, and thirst-best in 2011, behind Kyle Drabek and Zach Stewart– however, the 2012 consensus of top Jays prospects, based on Law’s and several other lists, done by Steal of Home has Sanchez behind McGuire, Norris, Nicolino and Syndergaard, as well as Hutchison.

So, Law is high on him– and he explains part of the reason why, saying that Sanches has “got great makeup and the delivery and body are what they’re supposed to look like.”

Sanchez has added some weight since Law last saw him, and against the Phillies he was “mostly working in the 94-96 range, showing good feel for a changeup but less for his slider.”

For a lot of evaluators, Sanchez has sort of slipped in behind the other high-end Jays pitchers in A-ball after not having the best year in 2011, so it’s nice to see that Law maintains his belief, writing that “now that he’s sitting in the mid-90s it’s hard to offer any reasons for skepticism beyond the usual caveats on young pitchers.”

He also provides notes on a few other Jays prospects, like 3B Kellen Sweeney– who didn’t look great, he says– and pitchers Dustin Antolin, Tyler Ybarra, and most impressive of all, John Stilson, who “was 91-94, straight but firm, with a hard-tumbling changeup at 79-83 that dropped almost like a splitter, showing one hard downer curveball at 81. There’s effort in the delivery, and stress on the shoulder, and the command wasn’t good, but if that’s how he looks right out of the chute he could move quickly through the low minors this year.”

Yup. That works.

Comments (5)

  1. That’s good news about Stilson, who could be a real sleeper pick for the jays if he can keep progressing his arm rehab like this. Another power arm for the bullpen would be sweet.

    • If Stilson fully recovers he could be a huge bonus for the Jays either as a starter or a Bard-Venters type set-up guy. He was pretty much lights out in college before his injury woes as a starter and a reliever. Nice to see he’s finally getting some press from Law and Chisholm who did a nice piece on him over at MLB.

  2. I am not saying Sweeney will burn out or anything, but we should be ready to see some spectacular flame outs in the minors drafting all the young-high uspide players to go along with the successes. It’s going pretty glorious so far (2011 Drabek, Snider aside and not drafted under GM AA).

    • Oh yeah for sure, a lot of crushed dreams and what could have beens in the not distant future.

  3. Wow, if Hanley Ramirez has a big comeback year, Jose Bautista may be a big reason why:

    It starts with the newfound work ethic, a regimen that didn’t just begin this spring. Ramirez went home to the Dominican Republic, after the worst year of his career, and sought out a man he says has been “a big inspiration to me,” Toronto’s Jose Bautista, and let Bautista push him to places he’d never been before.

    “I never worked that much,” Ramirez said. “But I knew that I needed it because I didn’t play the whole season. The other years, I always played over 150 games, so I just went back, got some rest and started [working out] in January. But after what happened last year, I knew I needed to work harder to get back soon on the field.”

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/spring2012/story/_/id/7704943/hanley-ramirez-dedicated-every-aspect-miami-marlins

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