The Blue Jays have made some important strides in sealing up their draft class. As Shi Davidi of Sportsnet.ca and Jim Callis of MLB.com report, the Toronto organization has agreed to terms on slightly over-slot bonuses with its second and third-round choices.
Both of the newest Jays are right-handed college hurlers. CJ Van Eyk, a second-round pick out of Florida State, gets a $1.8M bonus. Third-rounder Trent Palmer from Jacksonville University, went for $850K.
While the Blue Jays had to go a bit over the respective pick allocations to get these deals done, it seems fair to assume they won’t have any trouble finding the extra availability. The club saved quite a bit with its fifth and final selection, Zach Britton, and still has some of that available to use as needed to structure deals with top choice Austin Martin and fourth-rounder Nick Frasso.
Van Eyk was viewed by most major pundits as a top-fifty overall prospect. Keith Law of The Athletic was especially bullish, ranking him 23rd among all draft-eligible players. While it sounds as if there are still some things to iron out, the FSU standout is said to possess three promising pitches and a real chance at carving out a career in an MLB rotation.
It so happens that Law was also the chief proponent of Palmer. All other major rankings graded him in the 100+ range, but Law placed him 76th. The enthusiasm is dampened by Palmer’s lack of a projectable frame and occasionally wavering command. Even if he ends up in a relief role, it sounds as if Palmer will warrant a long look as a starter on the Jays’ farm.