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Blue Jays 2019 Top Prospects: #16- Billy McKinney

Coming in at #16 on our Jays Journal Prime Prospective customers countdown is Billy McKinney, a quietly talented outfielder obtained from the Yankees final time.

When the Blue Jays traded J.A. Happ to the New York Yankees final time, it looked like Brandon Drury was heading to be the principal piece coming again to Toronto. That may well nevertheless stop up getting the scenario, but Billy McKinney was quietly outstanding in a brief MLB cameo, and could stop up factoring into the outfield equation in 2019.

In 36 game titles and 115 at bats, McKinney ended up slashing .252/.320/.470 with six property runs, 13 RBI, and 7 doubles. With a bit of an unclear outfield photo in Toronto this time, he possible has a prospect to take a significant run at the remaining subject position, or at least receive some semi-regular at bats in the outfield anyway.

Identify: Billy McKinney
Posture: OF        Age: 24
Height: 6’1”         Excess weight: 205 lbs
Throws: Left      Bats: Left
Obtained: From the Yankees in 2018 by using trade (Happ). Drafted in the 1st spherical (24th) of the 2013 newbie draft by Oakland.


As outlined above, McKinney was better than anticipated in his brief stint with the Blue Jays, and it continues to be to be found if he can keep up that variety of generation, or if the league will adjust to him the moment they’ve collect more facts on the previous to start with spherical select.

Fangraphs has him rated as a 45/50, which is average or just marginally under. Though he was reliable final year, he’ll require to make on his resume before he’s viewed as anything more than what he’d been as a minor leaguer in the Yankees’ technique.

For illustration, he slashed just .226/.299/.495 in Triple-A before he was traded (in 56 game titles), and just .203/.292/.453 in 20 game titles in Buffalo. He was reliable in 2017 with a .306/.336/.541 in 55 game titles in Triple-A, but his stint in Toronto was the to start with time he seriously showed his possible to strike due to the fact the year before.


Though Fangraphs does not see the lefty-swinger as more than average for his strike resource, he’s rated marginally above at 55/55 for Activity Electric power, and the similar rating for Uncooked Electric power.

Last year he ended up swatting six property runs and slugging .470 in these 115 at bats, but I do not imagine that’s the variety of level we can assume heading ahead. It is achievable he could drive for 20 property runs in a time if he became a regular starter, but my guess is he’d land someplace closer to 12-15. Last year he matched his job high of 16 when he merge his totals across all amounts, but there could be a tiny more untapped possible there. That said, I do not assume him to turn out to be the up coming Jose Bautista in a Blue Jays uniform or everything.


The native of Dallas, Texas runs moderately well, but I’d stop brief of calling him an asset in the velocity section. Fangraphs has him at a mark of 50/45, indicating he’s about average when it arrives to foot velocity. He appears to be to go well plenty of to be an enough defender in remaining subject, but do not assume him to be a menace on the base paths, as his one stolen base for the Blue Jays was his only swipe of the time at any degree.


As I outlined above, McKinney is an enough plenty of runner in the outfield, but he could use some function in some of the other defensive departments.

Fangraphs has him rated as a 45/50 in the Discipline section, and just 40/40 for the Throw resource. It is a tiny regarding that he managed to receive a -.4 dWAR rating in just 36 game titles, but he surely felt like an improve in excess of what we witnessed from Teoscar Hernandez final time, so there is that.

Long term Worth

Last but not least McKinney’s Long term Worth rating arrives in at 40+, indicating that they do not see him getting considerably more than a alternative degree participant. Blue Jays admirers (and myself bundled) likely have increased than sensible expectations for him this time, but he may well have also taken some significant ways late final year to harness his possible. He was a previous to start with spherical select, soon after all.

As I’ve currently outlined, McKinney will be in a struggle for a roster location, and for participating in time in the outfield this year. With a team that possible features regular starts for Kevin Pillar in centre and Randal Grichuk in proper, McKinney will have to fend off the likes of Hernandez, and probably others that could problem for a roster location, like Dalton Pompey, who is out of minor league solutions.

Future: The final foreseeable future main did not function out so well

That final element may well be what performs against McKinney to start off the time, as he could begin the year in Buffalo and nevertheless remain below handle for the Blue Jays. If that’s the scenario it is possible mainly because of a numbers activity, but do not be astonished if he problems for a location on the workforce from working day one. If practically nothing else, he’s attained a long seem this spring soon after the way he performed late final year, and we’re sure to see him in the big leagues at some level, even if it is not Opening Working day.

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