Jays’ Hoffman: Success in Dunedin first priority


The Toronto Blue Jays selected right-hander Jeff Hoffman ninth overall in the 2014 draft. (ECU Athletic Media Relations)

Top Toronto Blue Jays pitching prospect Jeff Hoffman put together the best outing of his brief professional career Sunday, allowing just two hits in five scoreless innings while striking out three and walking no one. But if the 22-year-old is thinking about a promotion from the Dunedin Blue Jays, he’s not letting on.

“Right now it’s just a one step at a time thing. I know I’m going to be here in Dunedin for a while, at least until I prove myself here,” Hoffman told Jeff Blair and Kevin Barker on Sportsnet 590 The FAN Monday. “I’m the same as any other guy in the (organization) and until I prove that I can dominate at this level I won’t move up. I’m looking forward to proving myself here and if I keep doing it here, then hopefully I get a shot at moving up a little bit.”

LISTEN: Jeff Hoffman on Sportsnet 590 The FAN

Hoffman was selected ninth overall in 2014 even though he underwent Tommy John surgery shortly before draft day.

He made his first professional start May 20 of this year, allowing four earned runs in five innings while striking out three. He followed that up by surrendering four earned runs in 4.1 innings May 26 before holding the Tampa Yankees scoreless his third time out.

Baseball America ranked Hoffman third among all Blue Jays prospects entering the season, behind only Daniel Norris and Aaron Sanchez. Hoffman’s a college draftee with swing-and-miss stuff, so he has been viewed as a candidate to climb through Toronto’s system quickly and potentially make an impact as soon as 2015. For now, though, it sounds like he’s focused on the Florida State League.

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