LAWRIE, BRETT  
 
Image of    Nickname:   N/A Position:   3B-2B
Home: N/A Team:   BLUE JAYS
Height: 6' 0" Bats:   R
Weight: 215 Throws:   R
DOB: 1/18/1990 Agent: Dan Lawson
Birth City: Langley, B.C., Canada Draft: Brewers #1 - 2008 - Out of high school (Canada)
Uniform #: 13  
 
YR LEA TEAM SAL(K) G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO OBP SLG AVG
2009 SL HUNTSVILLE   13 52 6 14 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 14 .283 .308 .269
2009 MWL WISCONSIN   105 372 48 102 18 5 13 65 19 11 41 70 .348 .454 .274
2010 SL HUNTSVILLE   135 554 90 158 35 16 8 63 30 13 47 118 .346 .449 .285
2011 FSL DUNEDIN   4 8 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 .364 .125 .125
2011 PCL LAS VEGAS   69 292 64 103 24 6 18 61 13 2 26 53 .415 .661 .353
2011 AL BLUE JAYS   43 150 26 44 8 4 9 25 7 1 16 31 .373 .580 .293
2012 AL BLUE JAYS $483.00 125 494 73 135 26 3 11 48 13 8 33 86 .324 .405 .273
2012 FSL DUNEDIN   1 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000
2012 GCL GULF COAST   1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000
2013 AL BLUE JAYS $500.00 107 401 41 102 18 3 11 46 9 5 30 68 .315 .397 .254
2013 IL BUFFALO   3 12 2 2 0 0 1 3 1 0 1 7 .231 .417 .167
2013 EL NEW HAMPSHIRE   3 9 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 2 .538 .333 .333
2013 MWL LANSING   2 6 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 .250 .000 .000
2013 FSL DUNEDIN   4 12 1 6 1 1 0 2 0 0 1 0 .538 .750 .500
2014 AL BLUE JAYS   16 61 5 8 0 0 3 10 0 0 3 12 .169 .279 .131
PERSONAL:

  •  In 2008, Lawrie's senior year at Brookswood Secondary High School in Langley, British Columbia, Canada, he committed to the University of Arizona on a baseball scholarship.

  • In 2008, one scout compared him to Dan Uggla for his strength, power, and muscular build. 

  • Brett can dunk a basketball. 

  • In 2008, Brett's older sister, Danielle, was the ace pitcher with the Washington Huskies softball team. And she pitched for Canada's Olympic softball team in August, 2008 in Beijing.

 
Brett and Danielle are extremely close and each other's #1 fan. She is the Stephen Strausburg of softball pitchers. In 2010, she posted a 14-0 record with a 0.99 ERA with 160 strikeouts in 92 innings for the Huskies.

  • June 5, 2008: The Brewers chose Lawrie as their #1 pick in the first found of the draft, the 16th player chosen overall. He is highest drafted position player ever out of Canada.

    On August 5, 2008, Brett signed with the Brewers for a reported bonus of $1
    .7 million. Marty Lehn is the scout who signed him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • The day after Lawrie signed with the Brewers, he left for Beijing to play for the Canadian Olympic baseball team. He had just finished playing for the Canadian junior team in the World Tournament in Edmonton, Alberta, where he led all players in batting (.469), home runs (three), and RBI (16), earning the tourney’s “Triple Crown.” He was named the catcher on the all-tournament team for Canada, which finished sixth.

    Not only was Brett in the 2008 Olympics, but his sister, Danielle, pitched for Canada's softball team
    .

    And at the end of August, 2009, Lawrie joined Team Canada to play in the World Cup in September
    . 

 

  • During the winter before 2009 spring training, the Baseball America Prospect Handbook rated Lawrie as the third best prospect in the Brewers' organization. In the winter before 2010 spring camps opened, Brett was rated as second best prospect in the Brewer farm system.

    After moving to the Blue Jays organization, he was ranked at #2 in their farm system in the spring of 2011
    .

  • Lawrie is a Canuck with pluck, a tenacious and vivacious source of energy and excitement. He has enraptured a fan base, with the expectations placed upon him. He's been compared to Pete Rose, George Brett, and Ted Williams.  

    "The passion and intensity he brings to this clubhouse is unbelievable," Toronto pitcher Ricky Romero said
    . "You never see that kid tight. He's always so loose, and he wants to beat you every inning, every at-bat. That intensity is great for our clubhouse and for our team." (April 2012)

 
  • In 2010, Brett led the Southern League  in runs (90), hits (158), triples (16), total bases (250), and comparisons to Dan Uggla (countless).
    • Lawrie impressed Blue Jays scouts for both his tools, but also his attitude and willingness to work.

      "He's a very driven, focused, confident young man," Toronto general manager Alex Anthopoulos said
      . "And I think when you combine that with his ability, that is what makes him a great player.  On the upside, the ceiling, he is an all-star caliber player, at least the way the scouts talk about it.

    • There are some questions about Lawrie's makeup—that he has been known to be arrogant. But he is able to handle the pressure of being in the big leagues quite impressively.

      "I've always liked pressure, I've always liked being put in that situation," Lawrie said
      . "You miss 100 percent of the shots that you don't take—I like that. I think if you get put in a situation and you fail, people say, 'At least he tried, he's not going to be one of those guys that didn't try.'

     
    "I'm going to give it 100 percent in everything that I do and if I come out on top then so be it. If I don't there's always the next one."

    • Lawrie plays with so much intensity that many scouts and baseball people feel he may never be able to play 150 games per season.

      "We would never ask him to go less than his instincts tell him to," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said of Lawrie's intensity
      . "All players are going to deal with injuries, some might say well look at how many games he missed last year. Well, he got hit in the hand with a pitch and he had a groundball bounce up and fracture his finger.

    "Those are completely out of his control. I think as he gets into his career and gets established, I think he'll have a better feel—and certainly not trying to take away from the intensity—but I think he'll understand who he is as a player more and more." (March 18, 2012) 

    • Brett feels that music helps him before he takes the field. He likes to blast it on the clubhouse sound system before games, amping up himself and his teammates.

     
    "Avicii's 'Levels' and things like that," Lawrie said. "Upbeat music that gets your heartbeat going a little bit and gets you ready for the game."

    Lawrie plays it at full volume. And then he plays the game at full throttle.

    • May 17-21: Brett received a four-game suspension from Major League Baseball for his dispute with home-plate umpire Bill Miller. The disciplinary action taken by MLB was in response to Lawrie tossing his helmet in the direction of Miller after disputing a called third strike during Tuesday night's game against the Rays.

    The incident occurred with the Blue Jays trailing by one in the bottom of the ninth and one out. Lawrie got ahead in the count, 3-1, against Rays closer Fernando Rodney and was seemingly one pitch away from reaching base as the tying run.

    Rodney proceeded to strike out Lawrie on a pair of pitches that appeared to miss the strike zone. Lawrie immediately confronted Miller and, while doing so, spiked his helmet into the ground. The helmet bounced up and hit Miller on his right hip. 

    • June 4, 2012: Lawrie was in a food court near Sears when suddenly a shooting took place that resulted in two injuries and one death. Lawrie was at the store shopping for sunglasses when he heard the shots and got out as quickly as possible. He posted on twitter that he was "rattled."

     

    • Lawrie admitted to chafing somewhat by the way certain things were done in the Brewers' system. He said all players were expected to be the same.

      "But, at the same time, everyone is different," he said
      . "Everyone does everything different. So, you've got to respect that. But I'm glad I'm where I'm at now and ready to go.

      Lawrie's inability to always properly channel his emotions played out on a national stage in May 2012 when he was ejected by home plate umpire Bill Miller for protesting a dubious strike three call, then firing his helmet at the feet of Miller, who was struck by the carom. Lawrie was suspended four games for that outburst.

    Then-Toronto manager John Farrell said Lawrie makes the same mistakes that all young, fiery players make at times.

    "He continues to learn every day," said Farrell. "He's a high energy player, plays with a lot of passion, a lot of emotion. I don't think any player knows it all and fully understands every experience they're going to go through in the Major Leagues.  (Tom Haudricourt-Milwaukee Journal Sentinel-6/18/12) 

     

     

    • When Brett was 24 years old, he seemed to talk and act like a Major League ballplayer.  The previously headstrong Lawrie was embracing his surroundings. He was reaching out to teammates for advice and going into his daily hitting drills with a defined game plan.  

      The Blue Jays' organization wanted Lawrie to mature and settle into his role as a cornerstone of the team
      . The uncertain part was when that mentality would take hold, and it appeared as though the time had arrived.  "He's grown up -- he's still a young man, but he's maturing; he's getting a little bit older and that's normally what happens," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "The experience has taught him a lot of things at this level and he's starting to settle in and feel like he belongs.  You can have all the talent in the world, but until you establish yourself, and you've had some success, there's always some doubt in there. But once you think, you know what, I can play at this level, start having some success and feel like I belong. That does wonders for guys."  

      The transformation began during the final stages of the 2013 season
      . Lawrie had just gone through a first half of injuries sidetracking him, but even when he was on the field, the results weren't up to par.  It was clear that some adjustments needed to be made. Lawrie started to look at the game in a different way, picking the brains of veterans like Mark DeRosa and Edwin Encarnacion.  

      Encarnacion ran Lawrie through his routine of preparing for each day's starting pitcher
      . The personal tutelage included what to look for in the pregame video, how to approach each at-bat and how to force the opposing pitcher into Lawrie's preferred zone. It sounds simple, but it was a necessary learning curve for a player who had never dealt with true frustration in his career until reaching the big league level.  

      "When you come up through the Minor Leagues, nobody knows you, so you're going to have some success," Lawrie said
      . "It's your first time against them, and it's obviously their first time against you. It's kind of flip a coin as to what will happen.  After time, everybody gets to know one another and you have to find another way to skin the cat. You always have to keep adjusting. So that was the biggest thing, adjusting on the fly and looking for another way to get it done and using my teammates, hearing them out."  

      Lawrie also became more open to the idea of changing things with his swing
      . Former Blue Jays hitting coach Chad Mottola got Lawrie to stand more upright and tried to quiet his movements in the batter's box.  Lawrie had always been a hyperactive player, which used to be evident in the way he approached each at-bat. There were a lot of moving parts in his swing. He would wiggle his bat back and forth as the pitcher went into his wind-up, and there was a last-second hitch before Lawrie would load up for the swing.  That created issues with his timing at the plate.

      When Lawrie began to iron out a few of those problems, the positive results quickly followed
      .  

      New hitting coach Kevin Seitzer said, "He has so much in there, so much hand speed, short swing
      . Just [need] to get him to quiet down and get all of that waggle out of there. He's quiet in his setup—he's much better there—but when he goes to load and start to fire, that's when things get a little too out of whack. He has made huge strides since I've been here. That's where his focus is. We're eating this elephant one bite at a time, and my focus is Opening Day to where he's dialing in."  (Chisholm - mlb.com  - 3/05/14) 

     

    • The sky still seems to be the limit for Lawrie. He's a five-tool player with plenty of untapped power.


      TRANSACTIONS 

    • June 2008: The Brewers chose Brett in the first round, out of high school in Langley, British Columbia, Canada.

    • December 6, 2010: The Blue Jays sent RHP Shaun Marcum to the Brewers, acquiring Lawrie.
     
     
    BATTING:

    • Lawrie has tremendous hand strength that provides a quick bat. His quick, strong wrists and hands provide tremendous bat speed to drive the bat through the strike zone with authority. In 2009 and 2010, Brett had the best bat speed in the Brewer farm system.

      He is an exceptional hitter with the strength of a Canadian lumberjack. His bat will get him to the Majors.
    • Brett is a little pull conscious. He has a lot of power—mostly pull power. His power has been rated as high as 60 and even a 70 on the 20-80 scouting scale.

    • He hits from a Tony Batista-like open stance. But he is most like Dan Uggla: a a strong, aggressive hitter with a big swing. He has a quick bat that stays in the hitting zone for a long time, and balls carry well off his bat. While he's prone to chasing pitches out of the zone, he also has shown the ability to make adjustments during at-bats and series.

      His quick stroke allows him to wait on pitches and then drive them to any part of the park. He shoots the ball into both gaps.

      Brett is a good #2 hitter in the lineup. With his ability to hit for average with some speed on the basepaths and extra-base power, it may be the perfect spot for him.

    .3em='""' helvetica,='""' 14px='""' rgb(255,255,255);='""' none;='""' 0px;='""' 0px"='""'>"That two-hole might be a good spot for him," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said near the end of the 2013 season. "Brett, looking down the road, can almost fill in anywhere. We think he's going to be a good hitter. We think he's going to hit for average, he's going to hit his share of home runs, drive in some runs, so he can really slot in anywhere. You like him up top because he's got some speed so he's not going to clog anything up, and he can make some things happen on the bases."

  • Lawrie has a good batting eye and a real feel for hitting. He displays sharp instincts at the plate. He is fearless at the plate. He is aggressive at bat, but his pitch recognition is advanced enough so he doesn't chase balls out of the strike zone.

  •  
  • Brett's swing can be a bit long, but his bat stays in the hitting zone a long time. He hits from an open stance and dives into pitches and can drive them to all fields.

  • Lawrie is confident to the point of cockiness. He is a very aggressive hitter.

  • As of the start of the 2014 season, Lawrie's career Major League stats were: .269 batting average, 31 home runs with 119 RBI's in 1,045 at-bats.
  •  
     
    FIELDING:

    • Lawrie decided he could get to the big leagues more quickly as a second baseman than a catcher, the Brewer franchise's 2008 first-round pick requested that position change before the start of minor league minicamp in March 2009.
    • "I think it's better for me right now," said Lawrie, 19. "I still like catching. I've played infield all my life and never really got a chance to get used to catching. To go right into it is kind of tough.

      "I played third base some for the (Canadian) junior national team, but I played mostly second base. The way things are right now, my catching is probably behind me. I think my future might be at second base."

    It did not escape Lawrie's notice that two of the Brewers' top prospects, Angel Salome and Jonathan Lucroy, are catchers. Second base, on the other hand, is not a deep position in the system.

    "To be truthful, I think I can get to the big leagues quicker at second base," he said. "There's a lot more work to be done as a catcher. It could take an extra year to get to the big leagues. That's not really the road I want to go down. Nothing against catching, I love it and everything, but I love second base and the infield, too."  (Tom Haudricourt-Baseball America-3/20/09)

  • Brett did a fairly decent job behind the plate. He was quick back there, has strong hands and quick feet to move around well, showing fine agility.

    Lawrie has an average arm for throwing out runners. He matured and developed a catcher's mentality.

  •  
  • He is an aggressive, very confident player with a real drive to succeed. His hands are much softer and his footwork is now very smooth.

  • Brett is more athletic than his stocky build would indicate. He exhibits great anticipation and instincts at the hot corner. 

  • In 2011 spring training, Lawrie got a lot of action at third base, a position he had last played as a 16-year-old with Canada's junior national team. The move was permanent

    He adapted very quickly, playing the position with relative ease. He even started double plays with throws to second—one of the toughest plays for a third baseman—with relative ease. His  strong arm proved reliable and his ability to come in on slow ground balls appeared to drastically improve as the year progressed.

  • As a third baseman with the Blue Jays in 2012, Brett Lawrie ranked fourth in the AL among third basemen in Fangraph's Ultimate Zone Rating, which is an advanced metric used to measure defensive contributions. He trailed only Kansas City's Mike Moustakas, Texas' Adrian Beltre, and Los Angeles' Alberto Callaspo.

  • A move from third base to second had been ruled out by the organization earlier in the year, but the Blue Jays' line of thinking has changed and it appears the major shakeup is imminent.

    "We're looking future wise," manager John Gibbons said. "He's an above average third baseman, but kind of the way we're looking, if you look at his physical abilities, he has a chance to be a great second baseman. You look at the range factor and things like that, it might be a nice combo with him and Jose [Reyes] up the middle for a few years."

  •  

    Lawrie has spent his entire Major League career at third, but he was drafted by Milwaukee as a catcher and came up through the Brewers' Minor League system as a second baseman. He transitioned to third following an offseason deal at the 2010 Winter Meetings and has since become one of the better defenders in the Majors at his position.

    The one thing Blue Jays manager John Gibbons wants to avoid is moving Lawrie back and forth between second and third. When a final decision gets made it's something Gibbons wants to stick to so that Lawrie can settle into and find a permanent home.

    "I don't want to get into where you bounce him back and forth," Gibbons said. "I think, at this stage, he has too much upside for that. He's a really good third baseman, he could add a ton of range up there at second base. Combine him with Reyes up the middle."

  • By the end of the 2013 season, Lawrie had cemented himself as one of the best guys with the glove at the hot corner.

    Brett is so quick and athletic. And he can throw from any angle, off-balance and has just tremendous range. Though still overly-energetic, Lawrie has calmed down enough to be very smooth with the glove and his actions at third base.

    He has that fast-twitch athleticism that helps him on those quick plays where he's got to dive and you got to get up and make a play that benefits him. A lot of guys can't do that. A lot of guys can get to those balls, they dive and everything, but they can't get up and make that throw. He's got the arm and that quickness to get on his feet quickly and make the accurate throw.

  •  
     
    RUNNING:

    • Brett has just a tad above average speed, running the 60 in 6.75 seconds.
    • Lawrie has good instincts on the bases that give him a nose for stealing a few bases.
     
    CAREER INJURY REPORT:

    • May 21-June 13, 2009: Lawrie was on the D.L. week after nose surgery. He took a bad hop from a ground ball in the schnozz.
    • June 2 through mid-July 2011: Brett was on the D.L. with a non-displaced fracture in his left hand, having been hit by a fastball. A CAT scan revealed the problem. He was expected to be out of action for two months. But he came back after six weeks.

    • September 22, 2011: Lawrie was on the D.L. the last week of the season with a fractured right middle finger.

    • July 19, 2012: Lawrie took a scary fall into the camera well near the Blue Jays dugout when he flipped over the railing attempting to catch a Teixeira pop-up in the third inning. He was diagnosed with a contusion below the right calf and is day-to-day.

      August 4-September 7, 2012: Brett was on the D.L. with a strained right oblique. Lawrie felt a pinching sensation in his rib cage during an at-bat against Oakland on Aug. 3. He was removed from the game after the plate appearance and originally was listed as day to day.

    In the days that followed, Lawrie received regular treatment with the hopes of getting back into the lineup. He began throwing again on August 8 and went through some dry swings, but he was not yet to the point of being able to go through full baseball activities.

  • March 6-April 16, 2013: Brett strained his left rib cage while fielding a ball at third base during Team Canada's exhibition game against the Reds. He was out of the World Baseball Classic and it was announced he would start the 2013 season on the disabled list.

  • May 29-July 13, 2013: Lawrie was on the D.L. with a left ankle sprain. He was injured while sliding into second base in Toronto's 9-3 win over Atlanta.
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    Last Updated 4/18/2014. All contents © 2000 by Player Profiles. All rights reserved.