The Blue Jays added four prospects to their 40-man roster on Friday, which represented the deadline to protect players from being eligible for the upcoming Rule 5 Draft.
The prospects are… RHP Hagen Danner, RHP Bowden Francis, LHP Zach Logue, and INF Leo Jimenez. The team also claimed RHP Shaun Anderson off of waivers from the San Diego Padres.
Danner was the Blue Jays’ second-round pick in the 2017 draft. He was originally a catcher, but, after a poor hitting season for the Lansing Lugnuts in Low-A in 2019, the Blue Jays converted him into a pitcher. In his first season on the mound, Danner posted impressive numbers with the High-A Vancouver Canadians, including a 2.02 ERA and 10.6 strikeouts per nine.
Francis is the pitching prospect that the Blue Jays got back in the trade that sent Rowdy Tellez to Milwaukee and Trevor Richards to Toronto. Francis pitched 132 2/3 innings over 25 starts between Double- and Triple-A in 2021, posting a 3.93 ERA all told.
Logue was a ninth-round pick by the Blue Jays in 2017. He had unimpressive numbers in 2019 but saw a velocity uptick after working at the team’s Alternate Training Site in 2020. Logue’s results improved quite a bit in 2021, as he put up a very impressive 3.32 ERA in Triple-A over the course of 17 starts.
Jimenez played in Low-A Dunedin in 2021 but he’s got a big league-ready glove. He also impressed with the bat quite a bit this season, putting up a .320 batting average and .523 on-base percentage over 59 games. Jimenez walked 54 times and struck out only 36 times, which is always encouraging.
And then there’s the new guy, Anderson from San Diego. Anderson has 134 2/3 innings in the big leagues over three seasons with the Giants, Orioles, Twins, and Padres. His 5.75 MLB ERA isn’t impressive, but he’s had good results in the minors. Work your magic, Pete.
Francis and Logue are arms who could help the Blue Jays at the Major League level right away, so it’s no surprise that they were added. The other two, Danner and Jimenez, are a bit more surprising given they played in A-Ball, but it means they’re two prospects the organization is high on, or who they believe they could include in an off-season trade.
Some names who weren’t added to the 40-man who will now be eligible to be selected in the Rule 5 Draft are Eric Pardinho, Miguel Hiraldo, and Samad Taylor. The most surprising name being left off, for me, is Taylor, who slashed a .294/.385/.503 line in Double-A this season.
The Rule 5 Draft is scheduled for December 8.