A couple weeks ago, the Toronto Blue Jays called up Vladimir Guerrero Jr. to the majors. The promotion was overdue. Because of an archaic labor rule, the Blue Jays had incentive to keep Guerrero in the minors for as long as possible. Doing so would help the Jays accrue an extra year of team control, a year when they could control Guerrero’s salary. It’s a boring, lousy rule, designed to maintain some semblance of parity in a league where team payrolls aren’t capped, but its legacy will be that it keeps young, exciting talent from graduating to the majors. But the wait for Guerrero is over, and he’ll soon be your new favorite large adult son.
So who is Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and why should you care? We present our case.