The Blue Jays played their 4th game of the spring, and dropped their 4th consecutive against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday afternoon.
The Blue Jays had an afternoon contest against the Pittsburgh Pirates, which also happened to be Marcus Stroman‘s first start of the Spring. The 25 year old right hander looked sharp in his first turn on the hill, pitching two scoreless innings and striking out 3 of the 6 batters he faced.
As if often the case, Stroman was given just two innings in his first turn before giving way to the bullpen.
The Blue Jays were able to muster just a single run, losing their 4th consecutive game of the spring. Jose Bautista knocked in Dwight Smith Jr. for the lone run in the 6th inning, with a line drive single to left field.
22 year old closer Roberto Osuna allowed 2 hits in the 3rd inning, but induced an inning ending double play to get out of trouble. Ryan Tepera also scattered 3 hits in his appearance, but managed to keep the Pirates off the scoreboard as well.
Danny Barnes wasn’t quite as lucky in his appearance, as he balked in the winning run.
Rowdy Tellez continued to impress John Gibbons and the Toronto brass, going 1-1 with a double, a walk, and he was even credited with a stolen base. Don’t expect that do happen often, but it looks great in the box score.
Interviewed after the game, Stroman mentioned in an interview with Sportsnet,
"“I feel great, I put a lot of work in the offseason, take a lot of work in the weight room. I feel really strong and ready to go."
He also added:
"Had a good mix of everything. Salty did a great job of kinda mixing all my pitches, slider curve, cutter change heater sinker, um, I feel like I have a good amount of weapons to attacks hitters and I’m extremely confident this year and ready to go."
More from Jays Journal
- Matt Chapman has been exactly what the Blue Jays needed
- Blue Jays: The goalposts are moving in the right direction
- Single-A Dunedin Blue Jays advance to the Championship Series
- Blue Jays: Comparisons for Alek Manoah’s Second Season
- Blue Jays: Adam Cimber, the unlikely decision King
In the race for a potential second left-hander in the bullpen, Matt Dermody made a solid appearance, while Aaron Loup struggled against the Pirates. The veteran Loup will need to impress this spring in order to secure a position on the roster, and he struggled last season. He was an effective arm in 2015, but he’ll need to fair better in order to earn a job in the crowded bullpen picture.
On a side note, the Pirates’ second run was scored by a Canadian, Eric Wood, who doubled earlier in the inning before scoring on the Barnes’ balk.
The Blue Jays will get a rematch against the Pirates on Tuesday afternoon, looking to win their first game of the Grapefruit league season.
Fortunately for Jays fans, spring results in the box score aren’t all that important, which is a good thing on a day where the struck out 12 times. Despite that fact, there’s no need to panic in February.