7. Taylor Guerrieri
Taylor Guerrieri was another first-round draft pick. Guerrieri was taken in the 2011 draft out of Spring Valley High School in South Carolina.
Taylor earned a top 100 ranking by MLB.com prior to 2012, 2013, and 2014 seasons, reaching as high as the 44th overall prospect in the game (pre-season rankings).
At this point, he was still being projected with a ceiling as a number two starter.
2013 was a rough year for the right-handed pitching prospect. He had worked his way up to MLB.com’s 28th best prospect and had a 2.01 ERA, 0.985 WHIP, and only 12 walks in 67 innings. July 15th marked the end of his season, he suffered an elbow injury which led to Tommy John surgery.
To add insult to injury, he was suspended 50 games for a second positive test for “a drug of abuse.”
Prior to the injury, Guerrieri had taken over as the Rays’ number one prospect.
Despite only pitching in 9.1 innings upon his return in 2014, he was still ranked as the Rays’ 7th best prospect heading into 2015.
He didn’t disappoint in 2015, pitching between High-A Charlotte and AA-Montgomery. He combined for a 1.85 ERA, allowing only 19 walks in 78.0 innings. The sinkerballer even struck out 72 batters in his 78 innings of work.
In 2017 he suffered another elbow injury and pitched in only 9.1 innings (same as his return year in 2014).
At the end of the season, the Rays placed him on waivers, and he was claimed by the Blue Jays.
Taylor Guerrieri was a certain ace in the making. He was a first-round draft pick and was unhittable before his arm was ravaged by injuries.
He made his major league debut with the Blue Jays in 2018 at the age of 25, pitching in 9.2 innings with the big club. He finished 2018 with a 5.81 ERA in AAA-Buffalo for Blue Jays.
Guerrieri is currently on the Texas Rangers where he pitched in 20 games for the major league club last season. The results weren’t very promising as he posted a 5.81 ERA. On the bright side, he did show signs of life in Texas’ Triple-A affiliate, pitching in 36.1 innings and posting a 3.47 ERA.
Taylor Guerrier is currently 27-years-old, but if his arm his in good health he could make a positive impact in the major leagues.