The Blue Jays’ 21st-round draft pick, righty Parker Caracci, might be a bit familiar to those Jays fans who followed last year’s draft. He was selected with the 37th-round pick by the Jays in 2018 after getting himself noticed as Ole Miss’s closer. He had a huge 2018 season, earning second-team All-America honours. While his 2019 season wasn’t as good (4.99 ERA in 30 2/3 innings), he still struck out over a batter per inning (36) and he’s a great story of perseverance after getting cut from the baseball team twice before catching on in 2018. Baseball America notes that his fastball “continued to play better than its radar gun readings, but there were times when he was extremely hittable.” His fastball “has some late jump, helping him get swings and misses in the zone at 93-95 mph” and he pairs it with a slider that they call “fringe-average.”
In the 22nd round, the Blue Jays selected righthanded pitcher Nick Fraze from Texas State, coming out of his junior year and standing 6-foot-3 and weighing 180 pounds. He rose to fame with a National Pitcher of the Week Award on March 4 with seven scoreless innings of one-hitter, walking just two and striking out 12 against Rice. That said, he had a 4.84 ERA in 89 1/3 innings, striking out 81 and walking 31 this year. While he’s not really considered a top draft prospect, Baseball America liked his slider and his projectable frame.
The Blue Jays went with a righthanded pitcher out of Grossmont College in California in Anders Tolhurst with their 23rd-round pick. Tolhurst appears to have played a year at San Diego City College and then went on to Grossmont for a year where he struck out 83 and walked 37 in 66 2/3 innings with a 3.91 ERA. He has a commitment to go to San Jose State University next year but shouldn’t be too hard to sign.
In the 24th-round, the Blue Jays selected first baseman Spencer Horwitz out of Radford University in Virginia.While his batting average dipped over three years of college, he improved his walk totals and his power numbers, culminating with a .268/.392/.465 season with 10 doubles, a triple and 10 home runs, walking more than he struck out. Horwitz also played in the Cape Cod League in 2018, hitting .279 with two doubles, a triple and a home run, walking 11 times (and striking out 11 times) in 68 at bats.
The Jays selected a two-way player in the 25th round this year, Nate LaRue, a high school senior from Alabama. LaRue was noted for his catching but he also has a low 90s fastball. He’s already told the Blue Jays that he’ll head to Auburn next year.
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