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Bo Joseph Bichette (born March 5, 1998) is an American professional baseball shortstop for the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball (MLB).

Bo Bichette
Bo Bichette at bat, March 25, 2019 (cropped).jpg
Bichette with the Blue Jays in 2019
Toronto Blue Jays – No. 11
Shortstop
Born: (1998-03-05) March 5, 1998 (age 21)
Orlando, Florida
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
July 29, 2019, for the Toronto Blue Jays
MLB statistics
(through 2019 season)
Batting average.311
Home runs11
Runs batted in21
Teams

High schoolEdit

Bichette was home schooled, but competed in baseball for Lakewood High School in St. Petersburg, Florida.[1] As a senior, he batted .569 with 13 home runs, and was named the Gatorade/USA Today Florida Player of the Year[2] and Florida's Mr. Baseball.[3] Bichette committed to attend Arizona State University to play college baseball for the Arizona State Sun Devils.[2]

Professional careerEdit

Minor leaguesEdit

 
Bichette with the Lansing Lugnuts in 2017

The Toronto Blue Jays selected Bichette in the second round, with the 66th overall selection, of the 2016 Major League Baseball draft.[4] He stated afterward that he turned down four offers during the draft in order to go to Toronto, and signed for a $1.1 million bonus on June 17.[5][6][7] After opening the season with a .431 batting average through 18 games with the Gulf Coast League Blue Jays, Bichette was placed on the 7-day disabled list after experiencing an injury to his midsection, which was later determined to be a ruptured appendix.[8] He returned to the lineup shortly before the end of the season, and finished the year with a .427 batting average, four home runs, and 36 runs batted in (RBI) in 22 games.[9] Despite missing more than half of the season with injury, Bichette was named the Gulf Coast League's end-of-season All-Star at shortstop on September 13.[10] During the offseason, he represented Brazil at the 2017 World Baseball Classic – Qualifier 4.[11]

Bichette was assigned to the Class-A Lansing Lugnuts to begin the 2017 season. On June 7, he was named a Midwest League All-Star. To that point in the season, Bichette led the league in batting average, hits, runs scored, slugging percentage, and on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS).[12] Bichette raised his batting average to an even .400 after a 7-for-8 performance in a doubleheader against the South Bend Cubs on June 15.[13] On June 29, he was named to the U.S. roster for the 2017 All-Star Futures Game.[14] On July 6, Bichette was named the Midwest League Player of the Month for June.[15] Later that day, the Blue Jays announced he would be promoted to the Advanced-A Dunedin Blue Jays after the All-Star Futures Game.[16] Bichette was named the Midwest League's most valuable player (MVP), Prospect of the Year, and a Postseason All-Star on August 18 after hitting .384/.448/.623 with 32 doubles (2nd in the Midwest League), 10 home runs, and 51 RBIs in 70 games for Lansing.[17][18][19] For Dunedin, Bichette appeared in 40 games and hit .323 with four home runs, 23 RBI, and 10 stolen bases.[9] His combined .362 batting average led all of Minor League Baseball, and made him the first teenager to lead the minors in hitting since Gil Torres did so in 1963.[20] On October 5, 2017, MLB named Bichette Toronto's Minor League Hitter of the Year.[21]

In 2018, he played for the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats.[22] He appeared in 131 games and batted .286 with 95 runs (leading the Eastern League), 43 doubles (leading the league), 7 triples (tied for the league lead), 11 home runs, 74 RBIs (tied for 3rd), 48 walks (9th), and 32 stolen bases (2nd).[9][23] Bichette began the 2019 season with the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons. On April 22, he was hit on the left hand by a pitch and later diagnosed with a broken hand.[24]

Toronto Blue JaysEdit

On July 29, 2019, the Blue Jays selected Bichette's contract and promoted him to the major leagues.[25] On that day, he recorded his first major league hit, a single against Brad Keller of the Kansas City Royals, on just the second major league pitch he saw. On July 31, Bichette recorded three hits against the Royals, the second of which was his first MLB home run.[26] On August 6, Bichette became the first ever MLB player to hit 10 extra base hits in his first nine major league games with a double against the Tampa Bay Rays.[27] After hitting another double on August 7, Bichette joined Yadier Molina and Derrek Lee as the only players in the live-ball era to record a double in eight-straight games, and broke the Blue Jays franchise record set by Carlos Delgado in 2000.[28] Playing in Toronto for the first time the following day, Bichette extended his doubles streak to nine games, setting a new MLB record. He also set a new MLB record in extra base hits in the first 11 games of his career with 13. He is also the first rookie with 9 straight games with extra base hits since Ted Williams in 1939.[29] He also set franchise record with 20 hits and 11-game hit streak with 1.316 OPS during the 11-game span.[30] He finished the season hitting .311 with 11 home runs in 46 games.

Batting styleEdit

Bichette is a power hitter, and can generate great bat speed and power. According to Joe Siddall: "He does it by separating and delaying torso rotation after the foot hits the floor after leg kick, exposing his back plate surname and number, before uncoiling, with the bat at the same angle as his shoulders. When facing a strikeout or pay-off pitch (X-2 or 3-2), he replaces the leg kick with the left knee bowing inwards."[31]

Personal lifeEdit

Bichette is the son of former MLB player Dante Bichette and the younger brother of Dante Bichette Jr..[32] He is named after Bo Jackson.[33] He is a Christian.[34] Both Bo and his brother Dante Jr. have played for Brazil in the WBC due to their mother Mariana being a native of Porto Alegre, Brazil. Their maternal grandfather is of Chinese descent.[35]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "High school game's a fun break for MLB prospect Bo Bichette". Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  2. ^ a b "First-day draft prospect Bo Bichette makes the rounds". Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  3. ^ "Bo Bichette named Florida's Mr. Baseball day before MLB Draft". Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  4. ^ "Live MLB draft blog: Day 1 highlights". Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  5. ^ Birenbaum, Jonathan (June 10, 2016). "Bichette: Blue Jays were the top team on my list". thescore.com. Retrieved September 6, 2016.
  6. ^ "Toronto Blue Jays 2016 Draft Results". MLB.com. Retrieved June 17, 2016.
  7. ^ Davidi, Shi (June 12, 2016). "Blue Jays minimize risk with emphasis on college draft picks". Sportsnet. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  8. ^ Zwelling, Arden. "Big Read: You should know Blue Jays prospect Bo Bichette". Sportsnet. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  9. ^ a b c "Bo Bichette Register Statistics & History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved September 6, 2016.
  10. ^ Dykstra, Sam (September 13, 2016). "Nationals' Soto leads GCL All-Stars". MiLB.com. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  11. ^ Mcwilliam, Bryan (September 22, 2016). "15-year-old Brazilian pitcher hits 94 mph at WBC qualifier". thescore.com. Retrieved September 23, 2016.
  12. ^ Tripodi, Chris (June 7, 2017). "Guerrero, Bichette highlight MWL All-Stars". MiLB.com. Retrieved June 7, 2017.
  13. ^ Goldberg-Strassler, Jesse (June 15, 2017). "Bichette reaches .400 as Lugnuts win two". MiLB.com. Retrieved June 17, 2017.
  14. ^ "2017 Futures Game U.S. Rosters and Scouting Reports". Baseball America. June 29, 2017. Retrieved June 29, 2017.
  15. ^ Goldberg-Strassler, Jesse (July 6, 2017). "Bo Bichette named MWL June Player of the Month". MiLB.com. Retrieved July 6, 2017.
  16. ^ "Blue Jays to promote prospects Bichette, Guerrero Jr. to Dunedin". Sportsnet. July 6, 2017. Retrieved July 6, 2017.
  17. ^ 2017 Midwest League Batting Leaders | Baseball-Reference.com
  18. ^ Calloway, Brian (August 18, 2017). "Ex-Lansing Lugnut Bo Bichette named Midwest League MVP, top prospect". lansingstatejournal.com. Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  19. ^ Homlyard, Braydon (August 18, 2017). "Blue Jays' Bo Bichette named Midwest League MVP, Prospect of the Year". Sportsnet. Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  20. ^ "Get to know Bo: Bichette joins Pipeline podcast". MLB.com. September 22, 2017. Retrieved September 22, 2017.
  21. ^ Chisholm, Gregor (October 5, 2017). "Bichette, Borucki named Blue Jays Prospects of Year". MLB.com. Retrieved October 6, 2017.
  22. ^ "Jays' Guerrero, Bichette to open in Double-A". TSN.ca. March 23, 2018. Retrieved March 23, 2018.
  23. ^ 2018 Eastern League Batting Leaders | Baseball-Reference.com
  24. ^ "Blue Jays prospect Bo Bichette diagnosed with broken hand". Sportsnet. April 23, 2019. Retrieved April 23, 2019.
  25. ^ "Jays add top prospect Bichette for Royals series". ESPN. July 29, 2019. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  26. ^ Rob Longley (July 29, 2019). "Bichette gets a hit, joins his junior Jays buddies for win against Royals". Toronto Sun. Retrieved July 30, 2019.
  27. ^ Temming, Stan (August 6, 2019). "Blue Jays' Bo Bichette becomes first player to begin MLB career with 10 extra-base hits". sports.yahoo.com. Retrieved August 8, 2019.
  28. ^ Harrison, Doug (August 7, 2019). "Blue Jays' Bo Bichette extends hit streak to 10 games to start MLB career". CBC.ca. Retrieved August 8, 2019.
  29. ^ McKenna, Ryan (August 8, 2019). "Blue Jays' Bo Bichette sets MLB record for consecutive games with double". Sportsnet. Retrieved August 8, 2019.
  30. ^ Breaking Down Bo Bichette's Record Breaking Start | At The Letters, retrieved August 10, 2019
  31. ^ "Joe Siddall breaks down Blue Jays' Bichette's swing". Sportsnet. August 6, 2019. Retrieved August 8, 2019.
  32. ^ "ALL-USA Watch: Bo Bichette has been bombing away for Lakewood (Fla.) baseball". May 2, 2016. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  33. ^ Kepner, Tyler (April 20, 2018). "Now Batting in Class AA: Biggio, Bichette and Guerrero". The New York Times. Retrieved April 20, 2018.
  34. ^ Waldman, Ben (July 31, 2019). "Everything we know about Bo Bichette, the guy who may be the Blue Jays' next great slugger". torontolife.com. Retrieved August 8, 2019.
  35. ^ Neumann, Thomas (September 23, 2016). "Barry Larkin has ambitious plans to grow baseball in Brazil". ESPN.com. Retrieved August 8, 2019.

External linksEdit