We’re going to start our more in-depth look at the DSL Blue Jays by looking at starting pitchers. At the Rookie ball level, the distinctions between starting pitchers and relief pitchers are frequently fluid so we’re going to include anyone who made more than 50% of his appearances as a starter. We begin with the pitchers who made the most starts and work our way downwards from there. With the DSL club, there isn’t much to go on scouting-wise, so we’ll basically be looking at the players’ stats to help get an idea of what might be going on. If a player played for more than one team over the course of the season, he’ll be grouped according to the club he played the most with.
Our DSL Blue Jays Pitcher of the Year, Elio Silva, also led the club with 11 starts (tied) and 61 1/3 innings. His 2.05 ERA and 0.99 WHIP make him a prime target to get a promotion to North America after a strong year in the Dominican. The lefty completed his Age-20 season with a solid 22.4% strikeout rate and a 5.4% walk rate in his second year in the DSL, his first as a starter with significant innings. Look for him to jump to Bluefield at the age of 21 in 2017.
20-year-old righty Jose Dominguez had some solid numbers in his second season with the DSL Blue Jays but his first as a starter. With a 3.57 ERA and 1.29 WHIP, Dominguez struck out 58 batters in 58 innings, leading the club in strikeouts. He saw his strikeout rate fall slightly from last year but settled at a strong 23.0% while walking only 6.8% (well down from 2015). Dominguez also induced 1.44 ground outs for every air out, a very good ratio. Because of his age and ability to corral his walk rate, I’d expect Dominguez to head to Florida or Bluefield in 2017.
Despite being just 18 at the start of the season, the Blue Jays let Meliton Reyes log 56 2/3 innings in his first year with the club and he didn’t disappoint, posting a 2.70 ERA and 1.18 WHIP. Reyes struck out a healthy 23.7% of batters faced but struggled with control. While his walk rate of 9.1% was fine, particularly for a first-year pro, he also hit five batters and threw 13 wild pitches. Still, there’s a lot to like with Reyes, who could be a bubble guy as to whether or not the Blue Jays bring him to North America for the 2017 where he’d be pitching with the GCL Blue Jays as a 19 year old.
6-foot-2 righty Ruben Ventura completed a disappointing second season with the DSL Blue Jays at the age of 21. It was disappointing not because the numbers he put up but mostly because he didn’t pitch past mid-July due to injury, throwing only 16 2/3 innings. In four outings (including three starts), Ventura had a 3.78 ERA and 1.62 WHIP before getting shut down. He saw a huge drop in his strikeout rate to 14.5% (down from 39.3% in a comparable number of innings in 2015) while his walk rate remained above 9% (at 9.2% in 2016). It’s hard to see the future, given Ventura’s age and health.
If you like us here, “like” us on Facebook!
The 2016 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook is now available in e-book and print formats! Visit the Handbook page for more information!
Now is a great time to subscribe to the Blue Jays from Away Premium Content Section!
All photos are copyright Blue Jays from Away (2013-2016) and may not be used without permission.