The Jays have one of the deepest systems in baseball but are actually quite bottom-heavy in considering the concentration of pitching prospects in the lower minors including the Lansing 3, Roberto Osuna, and Adonys Cardona. It’s unclear which Jays pitching prospect will make the biggest impact with the big team in 2013.
Amongst pitchers Chad Jenkins and Deck McGuire are two names who had disappointing 2012s but stand a decent chance to pitch for the Blue Jays in some capacity in 2013. Jenkins was used as a reliever and actually made a few starts in 2012. McGuire spent the year in New Hampshire but struggled in his second full professional season. However, depending on the acquisitions of the offseason and the rehabs of Drew Hutchison/Kyle Drabek/Dustin McGowan/Luis Perez, Jenkins, McGuire and perhaps even John Stilson could see time with the Blue Jays in 2013. Stilson was set to play in the AFL but was removed from the roster without an explanation. Keith Law later tweeted it was just due to soreness and there was no new arm injury. His shoulder has been watched closely because of a partial labrum tear in his 2011 draft year. He could make a run on Toronto next year if he comes to Spring healthy.
Though they represent the best pitching prospects in the system, the Lansing 3 (Aaron Sanchez, Noah Syndergaard and Justin Nicolino) will likely spend at least another full season in the minors. Look for them to start the season in Dunedin with a mid-to-late season move to New Hampshire possible in 2013, but not to see them in Toronto until 2014 at the earliest.
Though lacking in overwhelming stuff, Sean Nolin dominated his competition in 2012 moving from Dunedin to New Hampshire without skipping a beat striking out 9.6 batters per nine with just 2.4 walks per nine on the year. If he continues to succeed in the upper minors, he too could see time in Toronto in 2013.