Arizona Fall League Watch – Oct 16, 2012

Phoenix 3 – Salt River 3 (12 inn.) – Oct 16, 2012

Deck McGuire pitched and was lucky to escape his inning having given up just one earned run on 3 hits and a walk. He had one strikeout. Sam Dyson would make an appearance in the top of the 11th striking out Marlins’ prospect Christian Yelich (pre-2012 BA’s #41 prospect) swinging on 4 pitches and Max Stassi looking to end the game (tied) in the middle of the 12th.

Ryan Goins and Sean Ochinko were the lone Blue Jays position players in Tuesday’s game. Ochinko hit an RBI single in the 2nd after Goins moved the runner to second on a groundout. Goins would cash in a run in the 6th on a groundball single to the right side. Goins would finish the game 1 for 5 with a strikeout; Ochinko went 2 for 4 with 2 singles.

Ochinko has been cast as a spare part minor leaguer because he served as the replacement to AJ Jimenez in New Hampshire (AA) after the more notable prospect underwent Tommy John surgery and recently received the assignment to the Arizona Fall League ending speculation that Travis d’Arnaud would be the Jays’ representative at catcher. Ochinko actually demonstrated some Yan Gomes-ian power as the backup catcher hit 9 HRs in 87 games in 2012 and OPS’ed a respectable .765 between Dunedin (A+) and New Hampshire. Considering the catching depth ahead of him, Ochinko will be hard-pressed to earn protection from the upcoming Rule 5 draft. However, it would take a team with very few options at catcher to swallow having him on their active Major League roster for a full season.

If Ochinko remains in the Jays’ system in 2013, it’s unclear where he will spend the season. AJ Jimenez is ahead of him on the depth chart and the team may want him to repeat AA considering his year was cut short by injury.  The Jays’ only other catching prospect who’s playing time warrants concern is in the lower minors and Santiago Nessy will likely rise no higher than Lansing (Lo-A) in 2013 considering his age. Therefore, Ochinko could find himself anywhere between A+ and AAA in 2013.

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