ST. PETERSBURG -- The Blue Jays released their Minor League assignments on Monday afternoon, and there were a few surprises in a group that includes top prospects Conner Greene and Anthony Alford.Greene, ranked Toronto's No. 2 prospect by MLBPipeline.com, finished last season with Double-A New Hampshire but will start this
ST. PETERSBURG -- The Blue Jays released their Minor League assignments on Monday afternoon, and there were a few surprises in a group that includes top prospects Conner Greene and Anthony Alford.
Greene, ranked Toronto's No. 2 prospect by MLBPipeline.com, finished last season with Double-A New Hampshire but will start this year with Class A Dunedin. The 21-year-old made seven starts with a 2.25 ERA for Dunedin in 2015, compared with a 5.04 ERA in five outings for New Hampshire.
Alford, the Blue Jays' top prospect, will also begin the year in Dunedin. It was initially assumed that he would begin the year in New Hampshire, but instead he returns to high Class A, where he appeared in 57 games last season and hit .302 with an .825 OPS.
The other surprise came with the assignment of right-hander Sean Reid-Foley, who will begin the year at low Class A Lansing. Foley made eight starts for Dunedin last season and posted a 5.23 ERA, compared with a 3.69 ERA in 17 games with the Lugnuts. Reid-Foley is Toronto's No. 3 prospect overall, per MLBPipeline.
The moves seem to indicate that the Blue Jays are putting a renewed emphasis on not rushing their top young talent. In the past several years, Toronto put such players as Dalton Pompey, Roberto Osuna and Miguel Castro on a fast track to the big leagues, but the club is taking a noticeably cautious approach to start this season.
Other prospects in Toronto's top 10 will report as follows: No. 4 RHP Jon Harris (Lansing), No. 6 SS Richard Urena (Dunedin), No. 7 C Max Pentecost (DL), No. 8 1B Rowdy Tellez (New Hampshire) and No. 9 OF D.J. Davis (Dunedin). No. 5 3B Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and No. 10 RHP Justin Maese do not currently have assignments.
Triple-A Buffalo's rotation will feature Drew Hutchison, Scott Copeland, Scott Diamond and Wade LeBlanc. New Hampshire will have John Anderson, Jeremy Gabryszwski, Jason Berken, Casey Lawrence and Shane Dawson. Dunedin will have Greene, Tom Robson, Ryan Borucki, Justin Shafer and Luis Santos. Lansing will have Reid-Foley, Tayler Saucedo, Francisco Rios, Ryan Cook, Conor Fisk and Angel Perdomo.
Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.