Sports: Clock’s ticking on outfielder Anthony Alford’s shot with Blue Jays - PressFrom - Canada
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SportsClock’s ticking on outfielder Anthony Alford’s shot with Blue Jays

15:11  11 september  2019
15:11  11 september  2019 Source:   thestar.com

These five Blue Jays hopefuls need a September to remember

These five Blue Jays hopefuls need a September to remember These five Blue Jays hopefuls need a September to remember

Blue Jays place Alford on DL, recall Smith. The injury bug continues to plague the Blue Jays . The club placed outfielder Anthony Alford , who was called up on Friday for his first crack at the Major Leagues, on The clock on his Major-League service time will continue to tick as he heals on the DL.

Anthony Alford ' s time in big league camp has come to an end, but he seems to have left quite the impression with Blue Jays manager John Gibbons. Gibbons had nothing but praise for the promising outfielder -- and Blue Jays ' No. 3 overall prospect according to MLBPipeline.com -- shortly after he

Clock’s ticking on outfielder Anthony Alford’s shot with Blue Jays© Tom Szczerbowski Blue Jay Anthony Alford has hit just .162 in 35 big-league at-bats.

Anthony Alford remembers his big-league debut in May 2017 like it was a moment made for the bright lights of the big screen.

“I felt like I was in a movie. Everything was moving so fast ... I was worried about the ball getting lost in the lights,” he said. “I hadn’t played much left field and I was starting in left field. I wasn’t really nervous about hitting. Even though in my first at-bat I was numb in the box, I felt like I forgot how to get into my batting stance. I was more nervous about defence at that time.”

The 25-year-old outfielder was immediately slotted into the Blue Jays lineup that day against the Baltimore Orioles two years ago, a luxury he was not afforded when was recalled on Sept. 3 for his fifth stint in the major leagues. Alford pinch-hit after the day he joined Toronto, ahead of the second of two games at the Atlanta Braves last week, and has played just one complete game since with a couple more appearances as a pinch hitter or pinch runner.

Blue Jays bats go cold again in loss to Tampa Bay

Blue Jays bats go cold again in loss to Tampa Bay This has been a week for the Blue Jays’ hitters to forget. Just four games after they were no-hit by Houston’s Justin Verlander, the Jays managed two hits off five pitchers in a 5-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday. Toronto hitters were retired in order in seven straight innings and struck out 13 times. The loss was more proof that this youth-oriented roster has yet to recover from the no-no experience with Verlander. And that’s a growing concern for a Blue Jays team trying to play its young prospects while avoiding 100 losses in the standings. It seems 100 might be the price to pay for taking a long and hard look at all that youth.

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As Davidi explains it, were Alford to break camp with the Blue Jays next April and stay in the major leagues for good, a full September of big league service here in 2018 would have pushed him dangerously close to being a

Using those small chances to his advantage is as crucial as ever for Alford, a former two-sport star out of Mississippi who split his time between baseball and football before committing to the Jays full-time. Alford, selected in the third round of the 2012 draft and ranked as high at No. 2 on the Jays’ list of top prospects, is out of options after this season. He needs to start proving himself worthy of next season’s big-league roster now.

“I’m going to try to play him just like anybody else,” manager Charlie Montoyo said Tuesday, before starting fellow September call-up Jonathan Davis in centre field over Teoscar Hernandez and leaving Alford on the bench once again for the series opener against the Boston Red Sox at the Rogers Centre.

Terrible game for the batters, Jays lose again to Rays

Terrible game for the batters, Jays lose again to Rays Blue Jays 0 Rays 5 Through the first 8 innings we managed just one hit (a Randal Grichuk triple which should have been caught). That was our only base runner, until a Danny Jansen walk in the ninth. Beyond that, there were few hard hit balls, maybe 2 or 3 all game. We only had 5 fly outs. And there were the 13 strikeouts. In the ninth, Jansen walked, Anthony Alford singled and Bo Bichette walked to load the bases with no outs. But we managed to avoid scoring. Teoscar popped out (with a totally unfair called strike on a swing that wasn’t close to being a swing). Grichuk struck out. And Vlad flied out to medium left to end the game. The bats have been in a coma for the last few weeks.

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Outfielder Anthony Alford used September snub as fuel. Now he’ s back with the Jays and looking to make a He fought hard for a shot as a September call-up, but fell short and said he used that Alford didn’t get into the game, but the Jays are thin in the outfield with left fielder Curtis Granderson

Time in the outfield comes at a premium with Hernandez, Derek Fisher, Randal Grichuk ahead of him in the pecking order, and Davis and Billy McKinney also in the mix. The competition could become even tighter later this week with Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hoping to make a return from a left quad strain before the end of the homestand.

Even with recent defensive mistakes from Fisher and Hernandez, there is little indication that the Jays will sway from their preferred three very often, including Grichuk. Montoyo made it clear that Hernandez didn’t sit Tuesday because of a failed play on a catchable line drive in a loss to the Tampa Bay on Sunday, an error that opened the door to a big inning for the Rays.

“That’s something I can’t control,” said Alford, who played 24 games in centre field and 26 games in right for the triple-A Buffalo Bisons this season, where he hit .259 with seven homers and 37 RBIs.

Gregor Chisholm: Blue Jays defence helps give series finale to Red Sox

Gregor Chisholm: Blue Jays defence helps give series finale to Red Sox The Blue Jays’ outfield made a comedy of errors against the Boston Red Sox on Thursday night and it cost them a shot at their first series sweep since the end of July. All three of Toronto’s starting outfielders — and even one of the reserves — were responsible for key misplays in a 7-4 loss to the Red Sox at Rogers Centre. Beleaguered left-fielder Derek Fisher made three of them on his own. Veteran starter Clay Buchholz was charged with four runs, but he might not have surrendered more than one it wasn’t for a series of early defensive miscues.

< The Toronto Blue Jays placed Anthony Alford on the 10-day disabled list Wednesday with a wrist injury and recalled fellow outfielder Dwight Smith from triple-A Alford recorded one more at-bat and played three innings in the outfield . Smith played in two games with the Blue Jays earlier this season.

The Toronto Blue Jays selected Anthony Alford in the third round of the 2012 draft out of high school in Mississippi. A strong commitment to playing Alford ’ s first full season was a mixed bag of bright spots and raw tools still needing refinement as he opened with low-A Lansing in the Midwest League

“I just got to keep confidence in myself that I know I can play up here. I know that I have the ability to play up here. It’s just a matter of getting the opportunities.”

The confidence Alford professes to have in his game doesn’t yet match the numbers he has posted in the majors, with a .162 average in 35 at-bats. He was a late call-up last year, managing to appear in parts of six games from the 20th of the month. Alford has never had a stint in the big leagues longer than seven games.

When he’s not on the field, Alford pays close attention to how opposing pitchers are throwing and their sequencing, working what he calls 27 “mental at-bats.” Physically, he takes pitches off the machine, focusing on facing high velocity and curveballs, to try and mimic in-game reps.

First base coach Mark Budzinski, charged with working with the Jays outfielders, also likes to see Alford shagging balls off the bat, the closest he can get to game reps during batting practice. Honing his baseball instincts, forgetting the football player in him, has been a challenge. His throwing has improved and he is taking better routes since spring training, Budzinski said, but the work continues.

“Throwing-wise, it almost looks like sometimes he’s throwing over top of a line, like he kind of stands up ... We talked about it in spring training, get more in his legs and using the strongest part of his body, his legs, to help throw the ball,” Budzinski said. “You can see he’s getting better at it, though. The ball’s coming out of his hand better.”

Those are the kind of things Alford will try to showcase when he has the chance.

“I just can’t be afraid to fail,” he said. “I’ve got a mindset of just locked in, give it my all. Whatever happens happens.”

Laura Armstrong is a sports reporter based in Toronto. Follow her on Twitter: @lauraarmy

Jays prospect Anthony Kay puts the fight back in his fight for a rotation spot.
Anthony Kay was the top pitching prospect in the Mets organization when he was with New York, but there were significant roadblocks to the major leagues. “Guys like (Noah) Syndergaard, (Jacob) deGrom, all them, you know you’re not pushing those guys out,” Kay said last month. The road became more straightforward when the 24-year-old left-hander was traded to the Blue Jays as part of the return for Marcus Stroman in late July. Shorter, too. It will be just shy of six weeks since the trade when Kay, now Toronto’s No. 3 pitching prospect behind right handers Nate Pearson and Alek Manoah, debuts against the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday.

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