Blue Jays prospect Guerrero Jr. named top Canadian offensive minor leaguer
Highly touted 3rd baseman posted .381 average, 1.073 OPS in 95 games
Toronto Blue Jays prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. has been named the winner of the Randall Echlin Award as the Canadian offensive minor-league player of the year.
Guerrero split his 2018 season between class-A Advanced Dunedin, double-A New Hampshire and triple-A Buffalo, putting up big offensive numbers at all levels.
The 19-year-old third baseman, who was born in Montreal while his father was starring for the Expos in 1999, batted a minor-league best .381 in 95 games. He also added 136 hits, 20 home runs, 78 runs batted in and a combined .636 slugging percentage and 1.073 OPS.
The Randall Echlin Award is the latest honour Guerrero, who was also named Baseball America's Minor League Player of the Year, MLB Pipeline Hitter of the Year and received Baseball America First-Team All-Star honours.
Fisher Cats' Romano top hurler
In other awards announced Wednesday by Canadian Baseball Network, Jordan Romano of Markham, Ont., was named Canadian minor-league pitcher of the year.
Romano excelled with the Blue Jays' double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats, going 11-8 with a 4.13 earned-run average in 25 starts. He also won his only start with the triple-A Buffalo.
In 142 1/3 combined minor-league innings, he struck out 128 batters and allowed just 126 hits. The six-foot-four right-hander finished first in wins and strikeouts among Canadian minor leaguers and was second in innings pitched. He was selected to pitch in the Eastern League All-Star Game and was named to the circuit's year-end all-star team.
London's Romak honoured
Jamie Romak of London, Ont., was voted the top offensive hitter in foreign or independent ball after batting .319 with 40 home runs and 97 RBI for the Korean Baseball Organization's SK Wyverns.
Andrew Albers of North Battleford, Sask., earned the top pitcher in foreign or independent ball honours, posting a 9-2 record and a 3.08 ERA in 19 games while striking out 83 in 114 innings in his first year with the Orix Buffaloes of the Japan Pacific League.