Otto Lopez

Otto Lopez takes infield practice for the Fisher Cats last Friday at Delta Dental Stadium in Manchester. The Fisher Cats are scheduled to open Tuesday night in Portland.

Three of the Blue Jays’ top four prospects (according to MLB.com) will suit up when the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, the Double-A affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays, open their season tonight in Portland, Maine, against the Boston Red Sox’ Double-A affiliate, the Sea Dogs.

Austin Martin, Jordan Groshans and Simeon Woods Richardson will be among the new Fisher Cats and all three rank among the top 80 prospects in baseball.

Martin, a shortstop and outfielder, helped to lead Vanderbilt to the 2019 College World Series championship, and was drafted fifth overall by the Blue Jays the following year. With the cancelation of the 2020 Minor League Baseball season, Martin will make his professional debut at the Double-A level. He currently ranks No. 2 among Blue Jays prospects and No. 19 overall according to MLB.com.

Groshans, a shortstop, was the 12th pick in the 2018 draft, and batted .337 with the Class-A Lansing Lugnuts in 2019 before his season was cut short due to a foot injury. MLB.com ranks him as the No. 3 prospect in the Blue Jays system, and No. 39 in baseball.

Simeon Woods Richardson, a right-handed pitcher, came to the Blue Jays organization from the Mets as part of the trade for former Fisher Cat Marcus Stroman in 2019. Toronto promoted the second-round pick to Advanced-A Dunedin, where he went 3-2 with a 2.54 ERA and averaged over one strikeout per inning. MLB.com ranks Woods Richardson No. 4 among Blue Jays prospects, and No. 78 overall.

Other Fisher Cats to keep an eye on:

• OL/IF Otto Lopez, on Toronto’s 40-man roster, won the Class-A Midwest League batting title with a .325 average in 2019;

• RHP Elvis Luciano, on Toronto’s 40-man roster, pitched in 25 MLB games for the Blue Jays in 2019 after being acquired in the Rule 5 Draft from the Royals.

• C Gabriel Moreno, also on Toronto’s 40-man roster, has moved up to No. 7 on MLB.com’s list of Blue Jays prospects thanks to a strong 2019 season in Class-A Lansing.

Three Fishers who played in Manchester in 2019 will return: IF Vinny Capra, OF Brock Lundquist and LHP Zach Logue. Plus, RHP Jon Harris, who was on the 2018 club, will also start the year in New Hampshire.

The Fisher Cats will play six-game series, Tuesdays through Sundays, throughout the season. Their home opener is set for Tuesday, May 11 at 6:35 p.m. at Delta Dental Stadium against the Somerset Patriots, the Double-A affiliate of the New York Yankees.

All 120 games will be broadcast live on the team’s flagship station, AM 610 WGIR.

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