Former Phillies prospect Kyle Drabek will compete against seven others for Toronto’s two rotation openings as the Jays’ Grapefruit League schedule gets underway in nearby Dunedin.
Ricky Romero, Brandon Morrow and Brett Cecil are considered locks for the rotation, while Drabek, along with Jesse Litsch, are considered the early favorites to break camp as the fourth and fifth starters. Part of the Roy Halladay package, the 23-year-old right-hander arrived in the Bigs late last season and started three games for the Jays. Has ascended to the top of Toronto’s prospect class and is now rated by Baseball America as their top prospect in the chain. Scouts believe the young son of Doug Drabek can follow in his old-man’s footsteps and become a frontline starter but will need to refine his cutter and changeup to minimize the damage against left-handed hitters.
Elsewhere, former Phillies outfielder Anthony Gose, who was traded to Toronto in a separate deal with Houston, and catcher Travis d’Arnaud, also part of the Halladay trade, ranked fourth and fifth, respectively. Outfielder Michael Taylor, who was immediately flipped to Oakland following the deal, has fallen to 10th on the A’s list following a disappointing season at Triple-A, where scouts were left wondering where his bat speed had gone.