Catching prospect Max Pentecost has had a tough time staying on the field since the Toronto Blue Jays selected him in the first round of the 2014 draft.
The 24-year-old has already undergone three surgeries on his right shoulder and missed the entire 2015 season as a result.
Now Pentecost is back healthy, and he’s made a huge impression on his manager at single-A Dunedin, especially with his work at catcher.
“When he’s behind the plate he’s a definite difference-maker, not in just that game but for an organization,” Dunedin manager John Schneider said on Sportsnet 590 The FAN’s Baseball Central Wednesday. “We’re talking about a premium defensive spot, he can catch, he can throw, he can block. He’s got all the qualities you want in a catcher. And then we all know he can hit.”
Pentecost has enjoyed a solid season in the minors, posting a .776 OPS with nine home runs in 71 games with Dunedin. Defensively, he hasn’t committed an error and has thrown out 47 per cent (7-of-15) of opposing base stealers in 19 contests at catcher.
While Pentecost has seen time at first base and designated hitter for Dunedin in 2017, he’s most comfortable catching, and the Blue Jays are going to continue giving him opportunities at backstop.
“You look at the overall goal, you want him to catch four or five days a week next year and he’s on track to do that and hopefully he can stay healthy for a year because if he does he’s a big-time difference-maker,” Schneider said.
Listen to Schneider’s full segment below: