Jay Blue: Summary of Blue Jays' draft picks rounds 31 to 40
By Jay Blue
Blue Jays from Away
The Blue Jays drafted righthanded pitcher Blake Sanderson in the 31st round, selecting Sanderson out of the Florida Atlantic University. The redshirt senior is 6-foot tall and weighs 176 pounds and had a 4.10 ERA with 75 strikeouts and 25 walks in 96 2/3 innings this season. Sanderson pitched in the Cape Cod League in 2017 and only threw two innings, giving up three runs but spent more time in the Cal Ripken League that summer, with a 4.18 ERA, 1.34 WHIP while striking out 21 and walking just three in 23 2/3 innings. Sanderson has probably already signed with the Jays as he's got "Toronto Blue Jays Organization" in his Twitter bio.
In the 32nd round the Toronto Blue Jays selected a name we all know, choosing righthanded pitcher Braden Halladay. Halladay pitched in high school at Calvary Christian in Florida and joined the Canadian Junior National Team a couple of times. While he's not the prospect his father was, the Blue Jays showed a lot of class taking Halladay in the draft. That said, Halladay will be going to Penn State in the fall.
The Blue Jays took another Florida high schooler, Daniel Batcher, with the 33rd round pick. Batcher, a 6-foot-5, 190-pound lefty, doesn't have premium velocity (topping out at 86 mph, according to Perfect Game) but he's committed to West Virginia and, seeing his draft placement, is likely to head to college in the fall.
The Blue Jays took another pitcher, Luis Quinones, a righthanded pitcher out of San Jacinto College North in Texas. At 6-feet, 205 pounds, Quinones is not a particularly big pitcher but he was an effective reliever, posting a 1.57 ERA with 53 strikeouts and just 16 walks in 28 2/3 innings. Quinones has posted a picture of him signing on his Facebook page and is probably already in Florida preparing.
The Blue Jays selected 6-foot-2, 190-pound high school righty Connor Phillips in the 35th round. Phillips was ranked 188th by MLB.com and has a commitment to Louisiana State. He throws 90-94 mph, touching 96 and is said to hold the velocity deep into games but he doesn't have much deception in his delivery. He has a solid curve and a work-in-progress changeup. That said, it's likely that he heads to college, again, due to the low draft position.
In round 36, the Blue Jays selected Indiana University's Scotty Bradley, a 6-foot-2, 221 pound senior from Pennington, New Jersey. Listed as a catcher by MLB.com, Bradley hit .260/.364/.520 in 2019 with 10 doubles, a triple and nine home runs. Bradley has some bloodlines as his dad, Scott Bradley played nine seasons in the majors and is the head coach of Princeton's baseball team. Scotty's reported to have signed for $5,000.
The Blue Jays took a redshirt junior, righty Andrew McInvale in the 37th round, out of Liberty University. McInvale was a weekend starter, leading the club with 17 starts and 103 innings, going 10-3 with a 3.41 ERA and 101 strikeouts, to 40 walks this year. He went to Howard Junior College and Baylor University before coming to Liberty and MLB.com reports that he signed for $90,000.
In the 33rd round, the Blue Jays selected another catcher, Ryan Sloniger, out of Penn State, a senior who signed for $1,000. Known for his leadership on the field, Sloniger hails from Punxsatawney, Pennsylvania and struggled offensively in 2019, hitting .219/.322/.322 with seven doubles, a triple and two home runs after a junior year in which he was one of the club's offensive leaders, hitting .306/.404/.494 with 13 doubles, two triples and five home runs. He's been assigned to the Bluefield Blue Jays.
In the 39th round, the Blue Jays selected pitcher Octavio Corona, a 6-foot high school senior out of Otay Ranch High School in the San Diego area. Corona has a commitment to St. Mary's to paly ball and Perfect Game reports that he has hit 93 mph with his fastball at one of their events.
With their 40th and final pick in the 2019 draft, the Blue Jays selected righthanded pitcher Miguel Obeso from Cowley County Community College in Oklahoma. The 6-foot-3, 280 pound hurler is reported likely to return to school after his freshman season in college, and he went 7-1 with two saves in 16 appearances, striking out 135 batters in 52 1/3 innings with a 0.80 ERA. He also hit .460 and led the team with seven home runs and 36 RBI all in his senior season in high school. In 15 appearances with Cowley, he threw 24 2/3 innings, striking out 42 but walking 17, sitting 94-96 mph and hitting 98 mph. He will likely head back to Cowley for another year but also has an offer from Texas Tech after he finishes his two years in junior college.
The Blue Jays have also signed a couple of non-drafted free agents including Kyle Huckaby (son of Ken Huckaby, former Blue Jay catcher and current minor-league catching coordinator), a lefthanded pitcher out of Benedictine University who also pitched for three years at Eastern Michigan. He had a 1.47 ERA in 30 2/3 innings with Benedictine this year.
Also joining the Blue Jays is Alex Nolan, who comes to the Jays via a circuitous route that started where at a junior college in Arizona. It appears that he was born in Burlington, Ontario but grew up mostly in Arizona. He then came to Brock University in St. Catherines, where he pitched for four years and also played in the Western Major Baseball League in 2017 with Fort McMurray (with, apparently some experience in the Intercounty Baseball League). He played in the Northwoods League in 2018 and was an All-Star in 2018 with a 4-1 record, a 2.36 ERA and 21 strikeouts in 38 innings when he was named to the team. He signed on to pitch in the Northwoods League again and the Jays signed him out of the league in mid June.
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