2017 Toronto Blue Jays Season Review: Carlos Ramirez

 Right-hander Carlos Ramirez had a breakout season in the Toronto Blue Jays organization in 2017, going the entire minor league season without allowing an earned run. Photo Credit: Jay Blue

Right-hander Carlos Ramirez had a breakout season in the Toronto Blue Jays organization in 2017, going the entire minor league season without allowing an earned run. Photo Credit: Jay Blue

By Emily @JaysGirlEmily

Blue Jays from Away

Now that the season is over, the crew at Blue Jays from Away will take a look at the Blue Jays one by one and review how each player’s season went, whether he met expectations (or not) and look at how he fits into (what we think of) the Blue Jays’ plans going forward.

Carlos Ramirez was originally an outfielder when the Blue Jays signed him in 2009. He transitioned to pitching during the 2014 season, while still in the minors. His major league debut came this past season, as a part of the September call-ups. His first appearance came on September 1 in Baltimore. He pitched the 10th and 11th innings of a game the Blue Jays would go on to lose in the 13th. He struck out a pair in that game without allowing a baserunner.

Ramirez did something truly remarkable in the minor leagues this year - he went the entire season without allowing an earned run. Beginning in double-A New Hampshire, he pitched 23 2/3 innings with a 0.00 ERA (and two unearned runs), then followed that up with 14 innings in Buffalo before arriving in the majors, despite losing about two months to an injury. Perhaps even more impressively, this streak continued well into his September call-up. He was seven games in, with 10 innings under his belt, before he allowed a run in the majors. He had allowed just one hit and two walks up to that point, with nine strikeouts.

That eighth game was an absolute shelling on September 20 against Kansas City. The Jays were already trailing 9-0 when Ramirez entered to pitch the 6th. The leadoff batter hit a home run, snapping the streak, but things didn't end there. The next batter walked, and scored on a double. Two straight ground outs scored a run, and Mike Moustakas hit another home run before Ramirez got out of the inning with a strikeout. The damage: four earned runs, three hits and a walk.

After that, he pitched in four more games and only gave up one more run (a home run on the 27th) and two hits over 5 2/3 more innings. All told, his ERA for the month was 2.70 over 16 2/3 innings. Hitters had a .111 average against him, and his WHIP stood at 0.54. He allowed 6 hits, 3 walks (a 1.62 BB/9), and got 14 strikeouts (a K/9 rate of 8.30). His K/BB rate was 4.67. He also followed in the footsteps of other Blue Jays fly-ball pitchers like Marco Estrada, inducing 22 fly balls compared to 11 ground balls.

Some regression should be expected as the league gets more adjusted to him, but I'm definitely excited to see what Ramirez will do in the future!

Contract Status:

Ramirez is still in pre-arbitration. He will reach arbitration in 2021, and become a free agent after the 2024 season.

Regular Season Grades:

Jay Blue: A

Emily: A+

Follow me on Twitter: @JaysGirlEmily

If you like us here, like us on Facebook!

The 2017 Toronto Blue Jays Minor League Handbook is now available! Visit the Handbook page for more information!

Emily

Emily is a Communications student who grew up with a Roy Halladay poster on the back of her door. A baseball history nerd, she played softball for nine years and changes her favourite Blue Jay on a regular basis. She fondly remembers going to her first Jays game at age six with her father, and spending the whole time staring at the elevators going up the CN Tower.