We continue our draft coverage with rounds 11-15. The Jays selected a projectible high school righty, a high school shortstop, a junior college center fielder, a college catcher and a big righty who finished his junior year. Let’s meet them.
Round 11 of the 2015 draft featured the Blue Jays selecting 6-foot-3 right-handed pitcher Marrick Crouse from Dana Hills HS in California. There is video of Crouse on the internet that features the young righty throwing a fastball in the high 80s and touching 90 and 91 mph and throwing a high-70s curve. The curve features some nice downwards break and he was also throwing a low-80s slider with sharp movement. The biggest thing that I took away from the video of Crouse was that his control was not very good at all. The slider was frequently in the dirt and the fastball was all over the place. Still, he’s a projectible pitcher who, if he adds some velo and finds command, could be a solid arm in the organization.
Crouse is committed to the University of San Francisco and had a 1.63 ERA with 75 strikeouts in 77 1/3 innings in his senior year. A report says that he was projected as third-to-sixth rounder but fell, likely because of signability issues.
In round 12, the Blue Jays selected center fielder D.J. McKnight, a 5-foot-10 center fielder out of Tallahassee College. Looking over McKnight’s collegiate record, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of home run power there with a .322/.422/.444 slash line this season with only one home run and one stolen base. Those numbers are actually down from his 2013/14 totals in which he hit .366 with five home runs.
McKnight, from Madison, Florida, was studying criminal justice and hoped to work for the DEA but will likely get a chance to play professional baseball first. I would expect him to sign fairly quickly despite a commitment to Valdosta State University.
In the 13th round, the Blue Jays selected a high school shortstop, Daniel Perry, out of Lassen High School in Susanville, California. The University of Iowa commit is 6-foot-2 and appears (from the video below) to be able to get some good loft on his swing but it’s hard to get a good read on his bat speed. Likewise his arm strength. While Perry appears to have decent footwork at short stop, he’s seen with a hitch getting the ball out of his glove on several occasions and might need to work defensively as a pro or in college.
In the 14th round, the Blue Jays selected catcher Ryan Hissey out of the College of William and Mary. The owner of one of the better Twitter handles out there (@hisseyfit18), Hissey just finished his junior season in college after a very strong athletic career. The well-spoken young man is six feet tall and 180 pounds and holds a career .292/.378/.458 lifetime slashline in college with 17 home runs. He was on the Johnny Bench Award Watch List (for the best collegiate catcher) and was an All-CAA for the Division I WIlliam and Mary in his sophomore year. Hissey wrote “Excited to be a member of the @BlueJays” on Twitter, which could very well indicate that he plans on signing.
Right-handed pitcher Jackson McClelland out of Pepperdine University in California was the Blue Jays’ 15th round pick. McLelland is a big (6-foot-5) junior who throws a fastball in the low-90s (sitting around 92 in the video below) with a curveball that has some nice break to it, both horizontally and vertically. His fastball appears to have some arm-side run to it as well. While he appeared to use a third pitch in the video, it was hard to classify but it had the velocity of either a slider or a changeup.
The 20-year-old from Beaumont, California was drafted once before, by the Pirates in the 35th round of the 2012 draft and comes with a career 2.83 ERA and 1.27 WHIP with 80 walks and 144 strikeouts in 226 innings at Pepperdine, spending his last two seasons as a full-time starter. He was named an All-WCC second team player in 2015 as the team’s Friday starter.
If you like us here, “like” us on Facebook!
Get your 2015 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook now! All the up-to-date information on the Blue Jays minor league system with 250 player profiles, team information and more! You can find it at the BJfA Shop or at our distribution partner, Smashwords.com!
The All-New Blue Jays from Away Premium Content section is here! Combined with the 2015 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook, it will be your best resource to the Toronto Blue Jays minor league system for just $1.99 per month or $15 for a full year (and get the 2015 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook free with a yearly subscription)!
All photos are copyright Blue Jays from Away (2013-2015) and may not be used without permission.