With September call-ups in full swing, the Toronto Blue Jays have made the first big move of the roster expansion period. The team has called up 25th-ranked prospect Daniel Norris from AAA.
Drafted in the 2nd round of the 2011 draft by the Blue Jays, Norris was part of a promising group of pitching prospects Toronto had in their system, including Norris, Noah Syndergaard, Justin Nicolino, and Aaron Sanchez.
Of the four, only Sanchez and Norris stay with the club, with Sanchez currently pitching out of the bullpen maintaining a 1.66 ERA. Norris was supposed to be a stellar prospect, but his future looked bleak early on his career.
The first full year of professional baseball for Norris did not go as planned. He struggled mightily in 2012 posting an ERA of 8.44 during stops in rookie and short season ball. He fared slightly better in 2013 posting a 3.97 ERA in two separate A ball locations.
The 2014 season was when Norris finally turned a corner.
He skyrocketed thorough the system and advanced from A to AAA. The AAA campaign saw Norris put up 38 strikeouts in 24 innings, and he was able to keep opponents under .150 while he was pitching.
Norris throws a low-90 fastball that induces a few groundouts. So it is unclear if his strikeout rates will continue at the major league level. He has a few solid off speed options, with his curve ball ranked 60 on the evaluation scale. (The highest ranking on the evaluation scale is 80.)
It is believed that Norris will pitch out of the bullpen, and will join aforementioned Aaron Sanchez to give the Blue Jays added depth out of the pen. On the 2014 season, Norris is 12-2 with a 2.53 ERA across three minor league levels.
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