By RENALDO DORSETT
Tribune Sports Reporter
FOLLOWING his Canberra Cavalry’s third place finish in the Australian Baseball League, Chavez Young was named one of the Toronto Blue Jays’ 28 non-roster invitees to Major League Spring Training.
Young, currently ranked No.29 in the Blue Jays’ farm system, will make his third consecutive Spring Training appearance with the club in Dunedin, Florida. “[Young] has impressive speed,” MLB.com said in a positional breakdown of the non roster invitees, “Keep an eye on him in centre field if he sees playing time, as his ability to stick at that position long term will be key.”
Young was called up to Spring Training prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and in his short time there, impressed the Blue Jays’ front office in the Grapefruit League both on the field and to move up the rankings and entered the top 30 on the prospect list.
In the ABL, Young and the Cavalry defeated the Adelaide Giants 3-2 to advance to the Preliminary Final. In the Qualifying Final, Melbourne defeated Perth, 9-2. The Victoria region entered a five-day COVID-19 lockdown therefore the game became the Championship Game, rather than a Qualifying Final, under the ABL’s playoff protocols for the impact of COVID-19 or weather.
Limited by quarantine restrictions and a foot injury, Young appeared in just seven of the 23 regular season games for the Cavalry. He hit .217 with a .467 OPS, five hits, two runs, one RBI, five total bases and two stolen bases. In his last full season of baseball, Young appeared in 111 games in 2019 with the Lansing Lugnuts in Single A-Advanced baseball. He hit .247 with 99 hits and 43 RBI. He also had an .669 OPS, slugged .354 with 24 stolen bases, 53 runs scored, 17 doubles, four triples, and six home runs.
In 2018, Young led the Lugnuts in batting average, runs scored, and stolen bases. Defensively, playing in centre and right field, he totalled 15 outfield assists along with 290 putouts and a .984 fielding percentage. He was named a Midwest League All-Star.