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With the 20th overall pick, the Blue Jays could select… Ryan Sloan?

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Photo credit:MLB.com
Ryley Delaney
26 days ago
The 2024 Major League Baseball draft is just over three weeks away.
For the second straight season, the Blue Jays pick 20th-overall, with the team picking prep shortstop Arjun Nimmala with the pick in 2023. Unlike last season, the Blue Jays will have their second-round pick (59th), as well as the 95th, 125th, 136th (compensation pick), and the 158th pick.
Their bonus pool for this draft is $8,987,000 for the first ten rounds. Afterwards, players signed from rounds 11-20 can sign for up to $150,000 each before cutting into the bonus pool.
Let’s take a look at an interesting prep pitcher.

Ryan Sloan’s bio

Ryan Sloan is an 18-year-old right-handed pitcher who stands at 6’5”, 220 lbs with a commitment to Wake Forest University. However, he attends York Community High School in Elmhurst, Illinois. 
It’s not unusual for the Blue Jays brass to draft out of the state of Illinois, the most recent time was in 2023 in the 13th-round when they selected Brennan Orf. However, the last time the Blue Jays signed a high school arm out of the state was back in 2012 when they signed Ryan Borucki with the 475th overall pick.

Ryan Sloan’s stuff

Unfortunately, there isn’t much in the way of statistics for prep players, meaning we’re stuck looking at his stuff.
Standing at 6’5”, Sloan’s fastball sits 93-96 mph, but tops out at 99 mph according to his MLB Pipeline scouting report. He pairs that nicely with a changeup that’s considered advanced for his age due to fading and sinking action. Sloan also throws a slider that has “two-plane depth” and some horizontal action.
His report also notes that he uses his size for extension, along with pitching at an odd angle that doesn’t allow batters to see what he’s throwing. Moreover, unlike a lot of tall, young pitchers, the delivery is repeatable and he throws strikes.

Ryan Sloan’s grades

As always, let’s take a look at how MLB Pipeline grades his stuff.
ToolGrade
Fastball60
Slider55
Changeup60
Control50
Overall55
There’s a lot to like about Sloan. The velocity is intriguing, and the fact his secondary stuff is just as good and he’s able to throw strikes is an encouraging sign for the team that drafts him.

Will the Blue Jays select Ryan Sloan

The Blue Jays most recently drafted a prep pitcher in 2022, and that hasn’t really gone well. Brandon Barriera will be out for the rest of the season due to Tommy John surgery, but his numbers in 2023 weren’t great.
Moreover, the Blue Jays selected a prep position player in the last draft, so I’d find it hard to imagine them drafting a high school player for the third straight season. However, it’s ideal that the team picks the best player available, and Sloan may just be that.

As always, you can follow me on Twitter @Ryley_L_D.

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