More Minor League Free Agents
By Jay Blue
Blue Jays from Away
Looking over the transaction wire again today, I’ve noticed a few names that either escaped my gaze or (more likely) were added to the lists of players electing free agency.
George Kottaras - The 32-year-old Scarborough native played with the White Sox and the Blue Jays organizations last year, playing a grand total of 47 games in Triple-A, hitting .238/.372/.429. He hit particularly well with the Charlotte Knights, hitting seven home runs (plus one in Buffalo), hitting his most home runs in a season since 2012 when he hit nine combined between Milwaukee and Oakland in the big leagues. Should we rule out a third go-round for Kottaras in Buffalo in 2016?
Bobby Korecky - The veteran righty spent his Age-35 season with the Bisons and had another solid season but his numbers did decline from his outstanding 2014 in which he saved 22 games and had a sub-2.00 ERA. In 2015, Korecky posted a 3.72 ERA and 1.53 WHIP in 48 1/3 innings with the Bisons. He’s been in the Blue Jays organization since 2011, signing at least three times on minor league deals.
Ty Kelly - Infielder Ty Kelly came to the Blue Jays when he was claimed off waivers from the Cardinals in July. Kelly went on to hit .264/.331/.313 for the Bisons (a big improvement over his numbers in Memphis). At 27, Kelly is still relatively young for a minor league free agent and will likely look to catch on somewhere to be an effective infielder in Triple-A.
Colt Hynes - 30 year old lefty Colt Hynes didn’t perform particularly poorly in his three innings with the Blue Jays this year (except for allowing eight hits) but he was solid over his time with the Blue Jays minor league teams in Buffalo and New Hampshire, combining for a 3.47 ERA and 1.33 WHIP.
New Hampshire Fisher Cats
Greg Infante - Hard throwing righty Greg Infante didn’t put up the kind of numbers that were expected of him. The 28-year-old Venezuelan walked 32 batters in 48 2/3 innings in Buffalo while striking out only 41 with a 2.77 ERA and 1.54 WHIP.
Mike Lee - I’ve heard some very positive things from Blue Jays’ staff about 6-foot-7 righty Mike Lee, who didn’t have much of a chance to show what he’s got in 2015, spending much of the season on the DL and only throwing 36 innings in New Hampshire. The 28 year old will probably be welcome back if he’s healthy and wants to return to Toronto (assuming that new management doesn’t completely audit and overhaul the minor leagues).
Luis Perez - Lefty Luis Perez, 30, returned from his injury plagued seasons to pitching pretty well for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in 2015, logging 52 1/3 innings with a 3.78 ERA and 1.41 WHIP. His 13 2/3 innings in Buffalo weren’t as good, however (despite a much higher strikeout rate) but Perez has proven himself healthy and could be a steal on the minor league free agency market for a team who wants to get a lefty on the cheap.
Kevin Nolan - A homegrown Blue Jay, Nolan was drafted in the 20th round of the 2009 draft and the New Hampshire native has spent the past three seasons near his hometown of Nashua. He was an All-Star in 2013 but his numbers have been on the decline since then and he slipped under the .300 level for on-base percentage for the first time in his career since his first season fresh out of college in 2009 despite stronger numbers (in a much smaller sample) in Buffalo over nine games.
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