Vlad Jr. says ‘it’s obvious that I’m ready’ for MLB call-up

Vlad Jr. says ‘it’s obvious that I’m ready’ for MLB call-up
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With Vladimir Guerrero Jr.‘s call up to the big leagues likely looming, baseball’s top prospect spoke to reporters on Friday and offered his thoughts about potentially playing in the majors soon.
“I’m not frustrated,” Guerrero said of still playing with the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons, according to MLB.com’s Matt Kelly. “It’s out of my hands. I just continue to play 100 percent, and when the time comes to get the call, I’ll welcome it.”The 20-year-old suffered a left oblique injury during spring training, but he’s shown no signs that issue will slow him down.In nine minor-league games since his injury, he’s hit .344/.432/.594 with two homers and seven RBIs in 32 at-bats. He also made a major impression during his first Triple-A game of 2019, crushing an extremely deep home run.You can see, it’s obvious that I’m ready,” Guerrero said. “I can’t control what happens, I can only control what I can do myself.”His arrival date in the majors remains unknown, and it won’t be happening this weekend in Oakland, according to MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm.Following the series in Oakland, Toronto is off Monday before beginning a two-game set at home against the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday.

Guerrero Jr. said he doesn’t care if he debuts at home in front of Blue Jays fans or on the road. He just wants to get the call.

“I’ve been waiting for the call to the majors my whole life,” he said. “I’ll continue to play 100 percent, just like in (Class) A ball, Double-A and here in Buffalo.”

“If he hits 25 home runs, I think you’re excited. If he hits about .250, I think you’re really excited,” he told Virk and Nelson. “Obviously, you’re going to see much, much better pitching on a consistent basis. You’re going to see bullpens that you’ve never seen before, and he doesn’t know any pitchers.

It appears Vlad Jr.’s time is coming, even if there were conflicting reports Friday about the date. Hector Gomez, a reporter in the Dominican Republic, reported that Guerrero would make his MLB debut Tuesday, but TSN’s Scott Mitchell reported that his sources said there would need to be an injury this weekend for Guerrero to come up that soon. The sources said there was a “1%” chance Guerrero would join the Jays next week.

Vladimir Guerrero Ramos Jr. is a Canadian-Dominican professional baseball third baseman in the Toronto Blue Jays organization. He is considered the top prospect in all of professional baseball by both Major League Baseball (MLB) and Baseball America.

Guerrero was ranked as the 2015 top international free agent by Baseball America, and 4th overall by MLB. He signed with Toronto on July 2, 2015, for $3.9 million. Guerrero was assigned to extended spring training camp to open the 2016 minor league season. On June 22, it was announced that Guerrero would make his professional baseball debut with the Rookie Advanced Bluefield Blue Jays the following day. Guerrero hit his first professional home run on June 24, a two-run shot in a 4–2 loss to the Bristol Pirates. On August 12, Guerrero recorded his first multi-home run game, hitting two solo shots in an 18–5 win against the Pulaski Yankees.[10] Later in August, he was named the Appalachian League‘s All-Star at third base. Guerrero played in 62 games for Bluefield in 2016, and hit .271 with eight home runs, 46 runs batted in (RBI), and 15 stolen bases. On January 24, 2017, MLB named Guerrero the third best prospect at third base heading into the 2017 minor league season.

Guerrero opened the 2017 minor league season with the Class-A Lansing Lugnuts. In a 6–3 win over the Great Lakes Loons on April 7, he hit his first home run of the season. Guerrero was named a Midwest League All-Star on June 7, and on June 29, he was named to the World team roster for the 2017 All-Star Futures Game. On July  6, the Blue Jays announced that Guerrero would be promoted to the Advanced-A Dunedin Blue Jays following the All-Star Futures Game. In a game against the Clearwater Threshers on August 31, Guerrero hit a home run to give the Blue Jays a 5–3 victory. The win ensured that Dunedin would make the Florida State League playoffs. Guerrero finished the 2017 regular season with a .323 batting average, 13 home runs, and 76 RBI in 119 games played. He also walked more than he struck out, with 76 and 62 respectively, and posted a .910 on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS). On September 6, Guerrero was named ESPN‘s Prospect of the Year. During the offseason, he played in 26 games for the Leones del Escogido of the Dominican Winter League.

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Entering the 2018 season, Guerrero was considered the top prospect in the Blue Jays organization by MLB and Baseball America. On March 23, Blue Jays team president Mark Shapiro announced that Guerrero would begin the season with the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats. Through the first month of the season, he led the Eastern League with a .398 batting average and 30 runs batted in. On June 4, Guerrero was named the Eastern League’s Player of the Month after hitting .438 with nine home runs and 28 RBI in May. On June 6, Guerrero was removed from a game against the Akron RubberDucks with a leg injury. Three days later, it was determined that he had a strained patellar ligament in his left knee, and would be on the disabled list for at least four weeks. On July 28, it was announced that Guerrero would be promoted to the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons following his father’s induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Guerrero hit .402 with 14 home runs and 60 RBI in 61 games with New Hampshire. On August 30, the Blue Jays added Guerrero to the roster of the Surprise Saguaros of the Arizona Fall League (AFL).

Entering 2019 spring training, questions arose as to whether the Blue Jays organization would have Guerrero on the Opening Day roster, or seek to manipulate his MLB service time by assigning him to the minors to begin the season. Keeping Guerrero in the minor leagues for the first two weeks of the season would prevent him from reaching free agency until after the 2025 season. On March 10, the Blue Jays announced that Guerrero had suffered an oblique strain two days earlier and was ruled out for the rest of spring training. Despite this, sales volume of Guerrero’s fan jersey was among the top five in baseball in early 2019.

Scouting report

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Guerrero is seen as a top prospect due to his exceptional hitting ability, which scouts have often graded an 80, the highest possible mark on baseball’s 20-to-80 scouting scale and the first 80 given to a prospect for his hitting. His power has often received a 70 grade, which indicates a “plus-plus” tool in the scouting industry. His defense produces more questions: scouts are unsure if he can remain at third base at the major league level, but he has shown the potential to develop into a passable defender.

Personal life

Guerrero is the son of Vladimir Guerrero, who was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in January 2018, and the nephew of Wilton Guerrero. He was born in Montreal while his father was playing for the Montreal Expos, and is a Canadian citizen. His cousin, Gabriel, plays for the Miami Marlins organization.

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