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Anthony Kay headlines list of Blue Jays prospects expected to get the call when rosters expand | The Star

A late playoff push by the Buffalo Bisons came to an end on Thursday night when a loss by the Blue Jays’ Triple-A affiliate combined with a win for the Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders mathematically eliminated Toronto’s farm club from post-season contention.

That means a select few players could be back in the big leagues as early as Sunday, when rosters expand to include anyone on the 40-man list.

There will be some new faces, too, although not every highly anticipated name will be seen in a Blue Jays uniform this September.

Here is a look at some players that could find their way to Toronto over the next month:

Non-roster options: The Jays can always add or subtract from their existing 40-man roster in order to recall players that are not currently eligible to join the team. The top two contenders in this category are right-handers Anthony Kay, their No. 5 prospect, and T.J. Zeuch, the No. 17 prospect.

Kay, who was placed on the temporary inactive list on Wednesday which could indicate a recall is coming, posted a 1.89 ERA in six starts for the Bisons after joining the organization as part of the return from the New York Mets for starter Marcus Stroman in July. Zeuch found his groove in his last four outings for Buffalo, throwing a no-hitter on Aug. 14 and giving up just three earned runs in his final 25 innings. He could also be a candidate for the Arizona Fall League after missing the first two months of the season because of a lat strain.

Long shots: One player unlikely to be added to the roster is top pitching prospect Nate Pearson, despite his recent promotion to Triple-A. Pearson impressed in two starts for Buffalo, giving up two runs and striking out 10 in 13 frames, but his 96 2/3 innings are a career high and he is coming off a missed 2018 because of a forearm fracture.

Service time will also come into play with Pearson. Toronto could gain a seventh year of control over the hard-throwing righty if they delay his big-league debut until early 2020, similar to what happened to Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who debuted on April 26 of this year.


Right-handers Julian Merryweather and No. 18 prospect Patrick Murphy, who both missed significant time because of injury this year, are other options to pitch in the Arizona Fall League, which begins on Sept. 18, as is No. 23 prospect Hector Perez. Toronto is expected to send four arms to join the Scottsdale Scorpions.

Returning arms: Reliever Elvis Luciano is the one guy the Jays need to put on the roster if they want him to remain with the club. The 19-year-old Rule 5 draft pick, who has been on the injured list since June 13 because of a right elbow sprain, needs to be on the active roster for 90 days this season or he must be offered back to the Kansas City Royals for $50,000 U.S. Luciano has spent 77 days on the roster to date.

Starter Sean Reid-Foley, Thomas Pannone and Brock Stewart and reliever Justin Shafer are all expected to rejoin the club. Reliever Ryan Tepera (elbow) is in Toronto and will be added to the roster on Sunday, according to Jays manager Charlie Montoyo.

On the field: September could be the last chance for outfielder Anthony Alford to make an impression. Alford, once Toronto’s No. 2 prospect, will be out of options after this season. He posted a .259/.338/.404 slashline and managed to stay relatively healthy this season, but with a logjam in the outfield it might not have been enough to wow Toronto’s brass.

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Infielder Richard Urena and centre fielder Jonathan Davis are good candidates to get a big-league call.


Back in the game: Left-fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (left quad strain), who is in Toronto to continue rehabbing after the rest of the Florida State League season was cancelled earlier this week because of hurricane warnings, could rejoin the active roster at some point next month. Starter Clayton Richard (left lat strain) and catcher Luke Maile (left oblique strain) are also working their way back from injury and could be activated.

Laura ArmstrongRead More

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