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It also doesn’t seem to matter much to Martin, who was quick to point out he was teammates with Bichette when the two were growing up in Florida and he just wants to get to the big leagues as quickly as possible. Your privacy is safe with us. One place that he knows he’ll be is in the batters box. Martin is on his way to Toronto; based on his talent and how highly the club regards him, he might not leave for a long time. Martin was called the best prospect in this year’s draft by The Athletic’s prospect expert, Keith Law, because of his performance, athleticism and overall quickness. “If you hang a breaking ball, I hit it. His stance and patience have drawn comparisons to MVP candidate Anthony Rendon while the long locks and power to the gaps are reminiscent of current Blue Jays rising star Bo Bichette. Martin, the Blue Jays’ fifth overall pick from June’s draft, and his agent, Scott Boras, had just put the finishing touches on a deal worth $7 million, the largest bonus ever given to a Blue Jays draft pick and second only to first overall pick Spencer Torkelson in the class. The product of Vanderbilt University was projected by most insiders to be selected a few picks prior but a surprise decision by the Baltimore Orioles dropped him into the Blue Jays’ lap instead. The move was designed to save the Orioles money on Day 1, which they will attempt to use on Day 2 to convince some high school players to turn pro. “Having the opportunity to be around those big-league guys and just being able to pick their brains so early in my professional career I think is a great thing and I think it’ll help me in the long run,” he said on a video call from his home in Florida. Republication or distribution of this content is His command of the strikeout shows a maturity well beyond his 21 years. Your favorite teams, topics, and players all on your favorite mobile devices. UFC Vegas 10: Who is heavyweight prospect Alexandr Romanov? Your combination of talent and character is going to lead you to be the best you can be. It’s a skill set the Blue Jays don’t currently have a lot of and, considering his college experience, he should move through the system quickly. 5, it’s possible he doesn’t know. More of a gap hitter with a smooth swing than a power hitter, he had just 14 home runs in three seasons but added 39 doubles. Powered by Minute Media © 2020 All Rights Reserved. Toronto, though, still has to figure out what to do with him. He was not fussed when asked about his reputation for having a big personality and demanding the best out of his teammates. rights reserved. Judging by the high praise heaped upon him by team president Mark Shapiro on Wednesday, the Blue Jays expect him to play a role sooner rather than later. This is what you need to know about Austin Martin born as Christopher Austin Martin. Newspapers Limited, One Yonge Street, 4th floor, Toronto, ON, M5E 1E6, whose $7-million-plus signing bonus is the highest in franchise history. Two top college arms in Max Meyer and Asa Lacy, both previously linked to the Jays, went next as Martin slid to fifth. permissions/licensing, please go to: 5, is expected to contribute most with his bat. “I think we were a little surprised (he was available),” Shane Farrell, the Blue Jays director of amateur scouting, said during a conference call Wednesday night. Biggio, though, can also play in the outfield, opening up room for Martin to take his spot in the infield one day. He is an American baseball infielder and outfielder for the Vanderbilt Commodores. The Blue Jays, of course, already have an infield manned by a trio of capable young players. Star Newspapers Limited and/or its licensors. As a sophomore, Martin led the SEC in average (.392), hits per game (1.62), on-base percentage (.486) and runs (87). I’m excited, I’m grateful for (the Jays) to give me this opportunity.”, Anyone can read Conversations, but to contribute, you should be registered Torstar account holder. The product of Vanderbilt University was projected by … I’ve always had that mentality.”. The native of Florida led the NCAA’s Southeastern Conference in average (.392), hits per game (1.62), on-base percentage (.486) and runs (87). Martin’s position likely will be determined by Toronto’s biggest need at the time of his arrival. permissions/licensing, please go to: He appeared at six different positions over his college career, splitting the 2020 season at third and center field. In 323 plate appearances last season, Martin struck out 34 times. Farrell declined to say where the Jays intend to use him and, since Toronto didn’t expect Martin to be available at No. Now that the hard part of getting him under contract is done, Martin can join the Blue Jays for summer camp at the Rogers Centre as a member of their 60-man roster. He could enter the infield mix alongside other emerging players such as Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Cavan Biggio, Bichette, Jordan Groshans and Santiago Espinal. Martin was selected fifth overall by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2020 Major League Baseball draft. 5 pick in Wednesday’s 2020 MLB Draft, landing one of the top players in the class with the highest selection the organization had held since 1997. rights reserved. I say that knowing the last five minutes we got positioned better.”, “We feel like you have a chance to be a very important part and fit right in with the guys. Expect the same approach here. Everything you work for, since you were a kid, is coming into fold. The Blue Jays haven’t been able to hit any home runs on the field this year because of a global pandemic, but they might have produced one during the first round of Wednesday night’s MLB draft. “We feel like we’re positioned better than any team in baseball. However, Martin and the notoriously stingy Boras wanted to be paid like the No. expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Toronto to colleagues, clients or customers, or inquire about Those were the first words uttered by Austin Martin as an official member of the Toronto Blue Jays organization on Wednesday. This year, he struck out just twice. 2 prospect entering the draft and called the “best pure hitter” of the 2020 class by MLB Pipeline with “no weaknesses at the plate.” But the Baltimore Orioles, picking second, drafted outfielder Heston Kjerstad, and after the Miami Marlins and Kansas City Royals went with pitchers, the Blue Jays front office snapped up a player they couldn’t have foreseen would still be there for the taking. “The fact that he has shown the defensive ability to play multiple spots up the middle is exciting, and valuable, in team building. Toronto Star articles, please go to:, Conversations are opinions of our readers and are subject to the, The Toronto Star and, each property of Toronto Star That’s really it. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is a fixture at third, at least for the near future, while Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio traditionally play up the middle. To many, Martin was the crown jewel of this year’s class and the Blue Jays somehow got him despite not having a top-three pick. amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0";amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "fs-fansideddotcom-widget-20";amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "search";amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart";amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon";amzn_assoc_region = "US";amzn_assoc_default_search_phrase = "Toronto Blue Jays";amzn_assoc_default_category = "All";amzn_assoc_linkid = "4ab57d8928672840a53d93425d4da43e";amzn_assoc_design = "in_content"; Build your custom FanSided Daily email newsletter with news and analysis on Toronto Blue Jays and all your favorite sports teams, TV shows, and more. When Martin gets to two strikes, he’s a difficult hitter to put away. The chances of him appearing in a Blue Jays uniform this season would be remote in any normal year; but 2020 is no ordinary year, and clubs may force prospects to the big leagues more quickly than they usually would with no minor league season. 5 overall choice and signed him for $7,000,825, the 12th-highest bonus in Draft history. MLB Pipeline ranked the 21-year-old second overall while labelling him as the best “pure hitter” available. Time off, intrasquad games in an empty ballpark in the middle of July and waiting on word about which ballpark they will call home hardly makes the Blue Jays’ current situation full of positives. 5. Martin doesn’t possess a lot of raw power but, according to scouting reports, the native of Florida makes the most of what he has and contributes in a variety of ways, particularly by putting the ball in play and avoiding strikeouts. He drew 85 walks in his college career to just 82 strikeouts. Not that being around professionals will necessarily change the seemingly confident Martin’s approach. He has no set position. All That day could come sooner than many people think. We’re looking forward to getting to know Austin even more and discussing those things.”. The Blue Jays were surprised to find him available with the No. TORONTO, ON - AUGUST 16: A general view of an empty Rogers Centre during batting practice and the CN Tower overhead before the start of the Toronto Blue Jays MLB game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre on August 16, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. He was listed as a shortstop on draft day but he has the ability to play third base and all three outfield spots. Austin Martin was the Jays’ lone pick on Wednesday with four more slated for the remainder of the draft in spots 42, 77, 106 and 136. And most mock drafts in the days leading up to Wednesday’s Round 1 had Martin going to the Orioles at No. “I just want to play ball. Martin plans to keep things simple, like he always has, big leagues or not. “To say we’re excited about the future of the Blue Jays is an understatement,” Shapiro said upon announcing the signing. presentation-ready copies of Toronto Star content for distribution First baseman John Olerud and catcher Brian Milner are the only players the Jays drafted who did not appear in minor-league games before their big-league debuts. If you do not yet have a Torstar account, you can create one now (it is free), Copyright owned or licensed by Toronto Star Newspapers Limited. expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Toronto The best pure hitter in this year's Draft, Martin … Martin represents the antithesis of that all-or-nothing approach by working deep counts and taking a lot of walks. In his junior year at Vanderbilt this spring, he hit .377 with a .507 on-base percentage in 16 games. Toronto Blue Jays news from FanSided Daily, 3 salary cap casualties for the Browns after the 2020 season. We'll never pass along your email address to spammers, scammers, or the like. Toronto appeared to catch a break after highly touted college infielder Austin Martin fell to the fifth selection. The Blue Jays have signed first-round pick Austin Martin. Blue Jays' Bo Bichette launched an absurd home run in BP, MLB enforcing rule to stop use of foreign substances on balls, 5 MLB teams who could pull off a Cinderella run, LIVE: Here is every MLB team's 2020 schedule, Blue Jays can't afford to keep Nate Pearson off the roster, Top 25 Super Bowl Performances of All Time, Each NHL Team's Most Likely Future Hall of Famer, 30 Greatest Teams in Premier League History, 28 most memorable buzzer beaters in March Madness history. Martin, who was considered by some experts to be the top prospect in this year’s draft before he fell to the Jays at No. “Wherever they want me on the field, I’ll play,” he said. I think it really started to pick up at picks two and three. The only thing about Toronto’s selection that raised eyebrows was his position. Instead Baltimore went way off the board to select outfielder Heston Kjerstad. To order copies of Martin will go from being selected fifth overall to playing alongside big-leaguers in the span of about a month. presentation-ready copies of Toronto Star content for distribution

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