The Blue Jays are calling top prospect Bo Bichette up to the majors, Sportsnet.ca’s Shi Davidi reports (Twitter link). The promotion seemed imminent after multiple reports stated that Bichette was pulled from his Triple-A game today, and Toronto created an infield vacancy when Eric Sogard was dealt to the Rays this afternoon.
With Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Cavan Biggio already in the big leagues, Bichette is the latest of the Jays’ top prospects to get his first taste of Major League action in 2019. A second-round pick in the 2016 draft, Bichette has developed into a consensus choice as one of the sport’s best minor leaguers — in midseason prospect rankings, Bichette received top grades from ESPN.com’s Keith Law (who ranked him fourth in all of baseball), Baseball America (sixth), MLB.com, and Baseball Prospectus (both eighth).
Bichette’s stock hasn’t dimmed even despite a somewhat abbreviated 2019 season, as he has been limited to just 55 Triple-A games (and four high-A ball rehab games) due to a broken hand. He was off to a slow start in April prior to the injury, though he has been heating up since his return to Triple-A, hitting .287/.343/.503 with seven homers and 12 steals (out of 15 chances) in 181 plate appearances. Had it not been for the broken hand, Bichette might have made his Jays debut much earlier, though Toronto first had to make some room in the middle infield since Sogard and Freddy Galvis were both playing better than expected.
While Galvis is still around at shortstop and Bichette has 30 minor league appearances as a second baseman under his belt, it seems likely that Bichette will be spending much of his time at short. MLB.com’s scouting report cites some difference in opinion amongst scouts as to whether Bichette will stick at shortstop over the long term, though he made strides with his defense last year and “he has the requisite above-average arm strength for the [shortstop] position.”
Hitting, however, is Bichette’s bread-and-butter. Baseball Prospectus describes Bichette as having “among the most [bat speed] in organized baseball, and he pairs it with plus barrel control to make his long, violent swing work despite not being the platonic ideal of a plus hit/plus power stroke.” On the 20-80 point grade system, Baseball America gave Bichette a 70 for his hit tool and a 55 for power. While he has yet to entirely break out at the Triple-A level, Bichette has hit .322/.380/.515 over 1443 total PA in the minors.
Service time-wise, Bichette is well past any possible Super Two cutoff point. Assuming he isn’t sent back to the minor leagues at any point, Bichette is under team control through the 2025 season, joining Guerrero and Biggio as what the Blue Jays hope will be the core of their next contending team.