Bo knows. You better believe he does. At least, that was the famous catch phrase given to the most famous two-sport athlete Bo Jackson, who starred as an NFL running back and an MLB outfielder during the late 1980s.
But this story isn't about that Bo. No, it's about the newest Bo to the Blue Jays organization that is currently waging an all-out war against the rookie level Gulf Coast League. Of course, he's referred to as, Bo Bichette.
As the story goes, Bichette was drafted to the Blue Jays in this year's draft as the 66th pick, which is lower than many scouting sites had him prior to the draft. Baseball America, for example, had Bichette ranked as their 46th best prospect, playing as a second baseman and third baseman in the future. ESPN's Keith Law had the Blue Jays potentially selecting Bichette with their 21st overall pick—the pick instead used to select starting pitcher T.J. Zeuch.
Instead, Bichette surprisingly fell to the Jays 45 picks later. While the first thought that might pop into your mind is that Bichette fell because of his potential, it was actually in fact because he was actively telling teams who he would and wouldn't sign with. Speaking with Rodney Page of the Tampa Bay Times, Bichette admitted that he had "turned down about four offers earlier in the draft because they weren't good fits."
Turns out, Bo knew who he wanted to play with. But that story isn't new. What is new is his ability to feast on professional pitching in his rookie season as an 18-year-old with the GCL Blue Jays. Right now, Bichette has played 19 professional games to the stroke of a .427/.446/.733 slash line with four homers and 35 RBI.
Of course, this shouldn't be too astonishing for those who have read about Bichette since draft day. The talk surrounding his selection was the high upside that he has with his bat and its powerful qualities that emulate that of his father Dante Bichette who played major league baseball for 14 seasons.
Although this is only an 19-game sample size, it is nice to see that Bichette is succeeding as a young prospect and can hit pitchers from both sides of the plate. His slash-line against left-handers (.368/.455/.632) isn't quite that of his against right-handers (..446/.443/.768) but with far fewer at bats against lefties (19 to 56) and a small sample to begin with, that may be able to normalize sometime in his developmental future.
No doubt is Bichette's success is important to himself as he starts his new career, but, more than that, it's important in changing the narrative about a farm system lacking in overall talent. Prior to the season, Law had the Jays system ranked as 25th in the entire league, which is less than ideal. But Bichette is part of a strong movement from prospects like Sean-Reid Foley, Connor Greene, Jon Harris, Vladimir Guerrero Jr, Max Pentecost, Richard Urena and many others to rebuild the farm into being ranked in the top half of the league.
After trading much of the farm system last trade deadline to make a run at the postseason, things are really starting to look up and Bichette is no doubt a part of that. Depending on how he finishes out the season, he could force himself into the conversation of top prospects in the Jays' system too.
Of course this doesn't mean that Bichette is surely going to become the next best thing in Blue Jays baseball. At such a ripe age of 18, the road ahead for Bichette is no doubt paved with uncertainty, obstacles and struggles that will make the glory days of today seem impossible to recreate.
This much Bo also probably knows.