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Conversations with the Herd: Blue Jays second baseman Spencer Horwitz

By: Brian Frank

Bisons fans know Spencer Horwitz is as an on-base machine. The sweet-swinging Maryland native won the Bisons' Stan Barron team MVP in 2023, when he slashed .337/.450/.495 with 10 home runs and 72 RBIs. His .450 on base percentage that season shattered the team’s modern-era record. This season, Horwitz was having another incredible year at the plate for Buffalo, slashing .335/.456/.514 in 57 games, prior to being called up to the Blue Jays in early June. He’s continued to get on base with the big-league club, hitting .315/.464/.463 in 19 games this season entering the Blue Jays’ Monday afternoon Canada Day game.

Since joining the Blue Jays, Horwitz has had to make the adjustment from having the automated ball-strike system (ABS) at Triple-A to having umpires call balls and strikes. That's a bit of an adjustment for anyone moving up from Triple-A, but particularly someone with as good a batting eye as Horwitz.

“(In Triple-A) it’s a fixed ABS,” Horwitz said in an interview with The Herd Chronicles on Sunday at Rogers Centre. “The computer is a set zone. Here there’s the element of humans – and humans can make mistakes. It’s definitely a different part of the game. And catchers are really good nowadays (at framing pitches), so it’s definitely taken a little bit to adjust.”

Taking reps at second base. Photo Credit: Brian Frank, Herd Chronicles

The 26-year-old is also adjusting to a recent position change, moving from first base to second base and even playing a little outfield. Back in May, Horwitz told us in an interview at Sahlen Field that the move to second base was made in order to keep his bat in the lineup on a regular basis.

“I came up as a shortstop in high school and played some second too, so it’s something that’s not completely foreign to me, but I definitely enjoy the challenge,” he said.


“I think it’s going pretty well,” he continued. “The thinking behind it is this (the Bisons') lineup is pretty good, and same thing with the big-league team, that lineup is pretty good as well – so just finding a way to get my bat into the lineup in different ways. It’s only going to help me in my career if I can play second base or play left field or play first, then I can get my bat in the lineup in different ways.”


Horwitz is one of a slew of recent former Bisons currently contributing to the Blue Jays – including Davis Schneider, Ernie Clement, Addison Barger, and Bowden Francis. The number of familiar faces in Toronto’s dugout has helped make the transition to the big leagues easier for Horwitz and his teammates.

“It’s awesome,” Horwitz said. “Being able to come up here and not just be playing baseball but also having some of my best friends here makes it easier. It makes it more fun. We’ve really enjoyed it so far.”

Horwitz at Rogers Centre. Photo Credit: Brian Frank, The Herd Chronicles

Recently, Horwitz and other rookies on the Blue Jays had the opportunity to go inside Fenway Park’s Green Monster and participate in the tradition of signing the inside of the iconic landmark.

“It was really cool,” Horwitz said. “It was fun looking at all the names. Being able to write my name in the Monster is definitely something I won’t forget.”

Horwitz soaked in the experience, examining the signatures inside the Monster.

“There were a bunch of older ones that are faded,” he smiled, “those are what I think are the really cool ones.”

But he was able to make out some of the names.

“Some that stuck out – I saw Max Fried, Paul DeJong, a bunch of guys – and bunch of players I didn’t even really know," he said. "It was really cool. It’s a piece of baseball history.”

The way he’s been producing since joining the Blue Jays, there will certainly be many more memories made by Horwitz at big league parks across North America in the coming years.


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