Blue Jays Consider Position Change For Top Prospect

The Toronto Blue Jays are still licking their wounds after a disappointing ouster from the Wild Card Series in two straight games. How will they construct their lineup for 2023 is a big question.

One interesting development may have started to materialize in the final game of the season, when the team's top prospect, catcher Gabriel Moreno, played four different positions. He started behind the plate in the first half of a doubleheader, then in the nightcap played some second base, third base and left field—two of those positions for the first time in his young career. 

A new report suggests that one way the Jays could handle their 3-catcher situation (Alejandro Kirk, Danny Jansen, Moreno) is by having Moreno change positions. 

We have to be open to everything.  That’s why you’ve seen him play in different positions,” Toronto GM Ross Atkins saidBut we have to be open to any way to maximize our 40-man roster at this point, and (catching) is clearly an area of depth.”

Moreno has also played a bit of first base and third base in the minors. And as for his four-position day? “(I’m) grateful to have the opportunity to play all of these positions," said Moreno. "I can say I have the ability to play different positions and I worked for that. I’m full of emotions. But I did have fun.” 

He even slugged his first career home run on the day. 

Atkins admitted that their top prospect needs to be a part of the major league team going forward, so flexibility in his position is a must. Returning him to the minors is not our best outcome, most likely, given his progress,” Atkins said.

Moreno hit .319 in 79 plate appearance for Toronto this season, after hitting .315 with an .806 OPS at Triple-A. In 2021, he batted a robust .367 with a 1.060 OPS. 

The Venezuelan-born Moreno is still just 22, so plenty of time to mold him into whatever the Blue Jays need. 

 Photo: Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports