Cardinals Prospect #9 - Jon Jay

Jay hit .342 and walked more than he struck out in his professional debut with Quad Cities in 2006.

Scout.com Player Profile

2006 Ranking: NR

Position: OF

DOB: 3/15/1985

Height: 5-11

Weight: 200

Bats: L

Throws: L

School: University of Miami

Became a Cardinal: Selected in the second round (74th overall) of the June, 2006 First-Year Player Draft. Received a $480,000 signing bonus.
 

2006

AVG.

AB

H

2B 3B

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

K

OBP.

SLG

OPS

Q.C. .342 234 80 13 3 3 45 42 9 28 27 .416 .462 .877

Staff Comments

Jason Scott (10): The Cardinals' second-round draft pick in June, Jay hit .342 with a .416 OBP in his professional debut for Quad Cities in 2006. He showed very good plate discipline, walking more than he struck out (28/27). Another interesting stat that I found was that in 76 at-bats with runners in scoring position, he hit .461. Jay doesn't turn 22 until March and having already mastered low Class A, it will be interesting to see where the Cardinals send him in 2007.

Leonda Markee (11): There is a lot to like about Jon Jay, based on his professional debut season.  He was one of a handful of 2006 draftees to begin their careers at Class A Quad Cities where he put up excellent numbers in his half-season or so of ball.  Jay displays excellent plate discipline and is one of only four hitters in the system this past season to walk more than he struck out, 100 or more plate appearances.  (The others, if you are interested, are Rico Washington, Jarrett Hoffpauir and Isa Garcia.)  I ranked Jay as the fifth-best position prospect behind both Stavinoha and Haerther.  It was extremely close between Haerther and Jay but Haerther got the nod due to three factors:  1)  The level at which he played, 2) His strong performance from July 1st onward and 3) Jay's limited at bats.  Haerther put up an identical OPS to Jay in similar at bats from July 1st on and did it two levels higher than did Jay.  Still, Jay is a very exciting young player who will skyrocket up the rankings with a good 2007 season.

Ray Mileur (12): A second-round pick of the Cardinals in the 2006 draft from the University of Miami (Fla.), Jay hit .342 with three home runs and 45 RBIs in 60 games for Quad-Cities. In November, he was named to Baseball America magazine's draft all-star team after a strong rookie season in the Midwest League.

He was named Cardinals Minor League Player of the Month in July after he batted .339 (37-109) with 18 runs, two home runs and 27 RBI in 27 games for the month.

Jeff Luhnow, the Cardinals' vice president for player procurement and the man who headed up the club's 2006 draft effort, said of Jay, "Jay has proven over and over again that he can hit, and that's what we really looked for. I expect him to go out and hit right away in the Minor Leagues. I don't expect to see too many slumps for him. He also can play center field, and that's exciting. He can run, he can catch, he can throw enough to play out there. He'll run into a homer or two, but he's not a power guy. His game is getting on base and making things happen."

Look for Jay to be promoted in 2007 to the (High-A) Palm Beach Cardinals.

Brian Walton (8): Jay impressed after being taken as the second of the Cardinals' three second-round picks in this year's draft from Miami (FL), then hitting .342 for Quad Cities out of the gate. Impressively, he walked 28 times and struck out only 27.

Over the long haul, can he handle the defensive demands of centerfield? Can the stocky lefty hitter develop enough power to become more than a fourth outfielder or to handle a corner spot? These are the same basic questions I asked myself about every one of the Cardinals' outfield prospects here.

I believe Jay has the best chance at this point to break out based on his batting average, on-base percentage, base running, and defensive skills. Not to mention the fact he is almost three years younger than yesterday's #10 pick, Nick Stavinoha.

Jay could start in centerfield for Springfield depending on how Colby Rasmus performs in the spring, but more likely will start in Palm Beach until the crowded outfield situation sorts itself out a bit. Still, I expect Jay to move quickly.

STAFF COMMENTS KEY: Staff Member (Individual Ranking), NR = Not Rated

To see our entire list of 40 prospects as they are unveiled daily, click here.
 

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