MAYBE…after all is said-and-done, Daniel Norris could end up being the best of the bunch!
The update of MLB.COM’s ‘TOP 100 PROSPECTS‘ list, released a few weeks ago, has the 21 year old, 6 foot 2 lefty making by far the most significant climb of ANY player since the spring release of ‘the list’! MLB.com has him moving from NOT being on the list at all to #29! THAT, is an impressive jump!
His meteoric rise has been attributed, in large part, to his ability to finally harness his dazzling ‘stuff’. Believe it or not, prior to the call-up of both Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez by the Blue Jays, Norris had moved ahead of them both to the #1 positioned, Blue Jays’ prospect, on the MLB.com team listing.
During his appearance in the ‘Futures’ game on the weekend of the All-Star break last month, he pitched one inning and retired all three hitters he faced on a total of eleven pitches including the last by a strikeout.
The Jays’ 2nd round selection (74th overall) in the June 2011 draft was signed for $2,000,000. To date, in ONLY two and a half years of pro ball his combined-totals line reads: a won/lost record of 13 – 12 with a respectable 4.09 ERA, a WHIP of 1.38 with 268 Ks in 235.1 innings.
The BIG breakout occurred this year with the ‘high-class A’ Dunedin Blue Jays where his record was 6 – 0 in 13 starts, covering 66.1 innings, with 76 Ks and an outstanding 2.44 ERA and an even BETTER 1.03 WHIP, which predicated his promotion, mid-season, to ‘AA’ ball!
In eight (8) starts with the Jays’ ‘AA’ affiliate, the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, after being called up, Norris had a 3 – 1 record, an ERA of 4.54, WHIP of 1.37 but 49 Ks in only 35.2 innings!
YESTERDAY he was promoted to the ‘AAA’ Buffalo Bisons!
We ALL know where his NEXT stop will be, the only question to be answered is…when?