Blue Jays prospect rising among baseball’s hardest throwers

Conner Greene is the Toronto Blue Jays’ No. 2 pitching prospect and is starting to see the unlocking of his potential.

In an Eastern League start against the Trenton Thunder on May 18, Greene topped out at 103 mph, making him the 12th pitcher in the minor leagues to hit triple-digits in the radar gun. What was even more impressive is Greene was able to throw multiple triple-digit fastballs with consistency.

“That is my new personal record,” Greene said. “Last outing was 102 mph and I don’t know where it’s coming from but I’m taking care of my body so every fifth day I can perform.”

This is a product of the added weight he has been able to put on to his athletic frame since the beginning of his professional baseball career. When Greene was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays out of Santa Monica High School in June of 2013, he standing tall at 6-3 but weighing 165 pounds.

That came from a workout regimen unique to the original muscle beach, strengthening the shoulders as well as the rest of his upper body on the still rings and getting a strong core from surfing the Pacific shores.

That regimen changed while under the umbrella that is the Blue Jays organization’s strength and conditioning program but the added muscle has bridged the gap between the 90 mph he threw in high school and his current personal record of 103 mph.

“It was just a great time,” Greene said, “an opportunity to get my body right and stronger and put on some meat, just solid meat.”

Greene spent the first two years of his young pro career in the rookie level. It was there where he learned that he couldn’t get away with just blazing speed in the minor leagues like he did in high school. He got sharper over the years and finished the last two seasons in New Hampshire and on the Blue Jays’ prospect radar.

Before his pro baseball career, Greene was into modeling and acting. Being a baseball player in Santa Monica High School, Greene had a friend in Charlie Sheen, who had him on his sitcom “Anger Management” for a couple episodes. One of Sheen’s most famous movie role is Ricky “Wild Thing” Vaughn in “Major League 1 and 2.”

“He’s a really good side arm thrower,” Greene said, “and he throws freaking gas, like down under, throwing like 86-87 mph. It’s just hilarious when we play catch. He always wants to play catch. He loves baseball. He loves the game of baseball. He has a good swing too. He’s a good ballplayer.”

It may not be long before Sheen gets to see his old catch partner in the big leagues.

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Sports Kave senior writer

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