Blue Jays win as Gavin Floyd keeps things complicated

Troy Tulowitzki and his newly-minted leg kick are already in midseason form as the shortstop launched a two-run home run deep over the left field wall in the first inning.

An RBI double off the bat of Ryan Goins would be all the Blue Jays needed after that en route to a 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates in spring training action Sunday afternoon.

Jose Bautista and Russell Martin also added doubles for the Blue Jays, but again, all eyes were on the mound as veteran starter Gavin Floyd looked to build his case for the job of Toronto’s fifth arm in the rotation.

Mission accomplished, too, as and Aaron Sanchez stay locked in a tight race.

Floyd pitched 4.1 innings on Sunday, allowing four hits while walking two, striking out two, and not allowing a run. His day included four ground ball outs and four fly ball outs.

This continues to create a “good problem” for the Blue Jays as two legitimate options have emerged, not to mention Jesse Chavez who is likely to open the season as the long man out of the bullpen, and Drew Hutchison who could begin the year as high-ceiling depth with the triple-A Buffalo Bisons.

It isn’t making John Gibbons‘ decision any easier, though. Team president Mark Shapiro recently said that final say on the 25-man roster makeup will be left to Gibbons and general manager Ross Atkins, adding that it would be a collaborative process.

Marco Estrada received the start against the Pirates, his first of the spring, allowing two earned runs with three walks over 2.0 innings pitched. Not an ideal start for Estrada, but it should be quickly discarded.

After offseason addition Arnold Leon bridged the gap to Floyd, Chad Jenkins forced two ground balls in relief before the ambidextrous Pat Venditte picked up the save.