As spring training ends, the competition for roster spots gets fierce. Teams have very tough decisions to make and, ultimately, there are more players in camp than there are roster spots. Inevitably, there are a end-of-camp releases and Baseball America’s Matt Eddy brings us the minor league transactions telling us who the Jays released.
Brad Allen has been a useful arm for the Blue Jays at the A-ball level and, when I saw him pitch towards the end of spring training, he looked like he had added some velocity. Unfortunately, he had a down year last year in Dunedin with an ERA of 5.50.
Gavin Floyd was a contributor to the major league team last year before an injury sidelined his season. He re-signed this offseason to a minor league deal but wasn’t able to get things together in time to start the year.
Jackson Lowery is a 24-year-old out of the University of Arkansas who was excellent last year in Vancouver but saw a blip in his stats as he rose to the Lansing level. Still his 4.03 ERA and 1.34 WHIP wasn’t bad, nor were his 21 strikeouts in 22 1/3 innings but he struggled in the Australian Baseball League.
Luis Sanchez is a 23-year-old Dominican who had mediocre numbers in Vancouver last year with a 4.61 ERA and 1.67 WHIP, walking 32 in 52 2/3 innings (more than he struck out. In three years with the Blue Jays, he struggled with his control, walking 4.2 per nine innings and no fewer than 5.5 BB/9 above the GCL.
Stuart Holmes was a 35th-round pick by the Jays in 2015 out of Nicholls State University. He pitched in Vancouver and Bluefield both years with mixed success. The 24-year-old lefty had a 9.60 ERA in 15 innings in Vancouver last year before pitching much better down a level in Bluefield.
Daniel Moritz was a non-drafted free agent who signed last year and only pitched one game in the Gulf Coast League, giving up three hits but no runs in 2 1/3 innings.
Brett Wellman is a left-handed hitting catcher who was also a non-drafted free agent. The 25 year old didn’t play much last year, getting one hit in nine plate appearances (but three walks) with the Vancouver Canadians.
Alfredo Bohorquez, now 26, was also signed last year out of college and had a great .345 OBP in 36 games for the GCL last year at the age of 25. The infielder went to St. Catherine College in Kentucky.
D.J. McKnight is the highest draftee (aside from Gavin Floyd) among the released players. McKnight was drafted in the 12th round by the Blue Jays in 2015 and played for two years in short-season leagues, peaking in Vancouver last year and hit .228/.310/.409, showing solid power despite 58 strikeouts in 127 at bats.
We wish all of the players the best of luck in their careers!
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