Blue Jays take Stroman No. 22 overall

TORONTO — The Blue Jays selected college right-hander Marcus Stroman with their second pick — No. 22 overall — of the First-Year Player Draft on Monday night.

Stroman is a 5-foot-9 reliever with an electric arm that has drawn somecomparisons to former Major Leaguer Tom Gordon. He reportedly throws his fastball in the mid-90s while also possessing an above-average curveball.

The 21-year-old is a hard thrower with the type of advanced skills that could translate into a relatively quick ascension through the Minor Leagues. MLB.com had him ranked as the 10th-best prospect in the Draft while the pick comes with a price slot bonus of $1.8 million.

Stroman appeared in 17 games as a junior at Duke University this season. He went 3-4 with a 2.80 ERA and 90 strikeouts in 64 1/3 innings. He recorded four saves but also made eight starts but it wasn’t immediately clear whether the Blue Jays view his long-term future as a starter or a reliever.

In 2011, Stroman made seven relief appearances with four saves and 17 strikeouts for the USA Baseball Collegiate National team. He was originally selected in the 18th round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft by the Nationals but opted to attend university instead.

“He throws his fastball consistently in the mid-90s with some pretty good tail when it’s down in the zone,” MLB.com columnist Jonathan Mayo wrote in his scouting report. “He complements it with a power curve that has a nasty late break to it. His command isn’t fine, but he’s generally around the strike zone with both offerings.”

Stroman was Toronto’s second pick of the night following the selection of outfielder D.J. Davis with the 17th overall selection.

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