Mark Buehrle, Ricky Romero shine in loss against Tampa Bay


Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Final: Tampa Bay 6, Toronto 3

Despite the possibility of todays game being rained out and another game cut short due rain, we were able to get a full nine inning game in this afternoon.

Mark Buehrle looked sharped in his second start of the spring. He started the game off by striking out Desmond Jennings and the regaining AL Rookie of the Year Wil Myers. In between the first two strikeouts Matt Joyce singled to right centre and Jose Bautista tried to dive to catch the ball. The ball deflected off of the glove of Bautista, but Anthony Gose threw out Joyce who was trying to take second on the play. That was followed by a 1-2-3 second inning where Mark was pitching ahead of hitters and was aggressive with his pin-point control.

Buehrle faced a bases loaded no out situation after two singles and a walk. Jennings singled to right field to drive in Kevin KiermaierJerry Sands took a wide turn around third and Jose threw him out instantly. Mark was able to get out of the inning with the lone run scored.

There was fuel added to the fire of the last two rotation spot competition. Marcus Stroman allowed a two-run homerun to Kiermaier and a RBI single to Myers in three innings of work, while striking out one and walking one. He was aggressive with his fastball and used his slider well today, staying ahead of hitters for the most part.

The best part of todays game is that Ricky Romero was outstanding. Pitching only two innings he allowed one hit and a walk while striking out three Rays hitters. An encouraging sign of Ricky’s outing was the fact that like Mark Buehrle, he was aggressive in the zone pitching ahead. He also showed the great curveball that we know he has.

The greatest part of Romero’s outing was in his second inning of work with two outs and a runner on first. Curt Casali reached first base safely on a throwing error by Macier Izturis who was trying to get the force out at second. Ricky then showed his new poise on the mound by coming back and striking out Richie Shaffer on three pitches. The only thing Toronto

Todd Redmond then came in for the ninth inning and promptly gave up two runs on three hits in his lone inning.

Bautista got the scoring started by driving in Dioner Navarro in the fifth inning, both of whom finished the day with two hits each. Izturis and Josh Thole both singled and scored to begin the ninth inning. A reviewed play at first and a strikeout and the game is over.

But the most intriguing part of the game was Romero’s good outing, the struggle of Todd Redmond in the ninth and Marcus’ so-so proformance. What impact will this have on the starting rotation competition? Who has the inside track? Hopefully more questions will be answered after tomorrows game the Drew Hutchison is set to start.