Toronto Blue Jays News

Blue Jays: Recapping the big storylines from 2018

SURPRISE, AZ - NOVEMBER 03: AFL West All-Star, Vladimir Guerrero Jr #27 of the Toronto Blue Jays reacts as he bats during the Arizona Fall League All Star Game at Surprise Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Surprise, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
SURPRISE, AZ - NOVEMBER 03: AFL West All-Star, Vladimir Guerrero Jr #27 of the Toronto Blue Jays reacts as he bats during the Arizona Fall League All Star Game at Surprise Stadium on November 3, 2018 in Surprise, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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TORONTO, ON – SEPTEMBER 21: Lourdes Gurriel Jr. #13 of the Toronto Blue Jays celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the first inning during MLB game action against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre on September 21, 2018 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON – SEPTEMBER 21: Lourdes Gurriel Jr. #13 of the Toronto Blue Jays celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the first inning during MLB game action against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre on September 21, 2018 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and his historic streak

Continuing on the positive side of things for a while, the Blue Jays had another youngster was who hugely impressive last year. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. didn’t take long to get acclimatized to the highest level, and he finished the season with a slash line of .281/.309/.446 in 65 games with the Blue Jays, getting 249 at bats. He adding 11 home runs, eight doubles, and 35 RBI, and added a lot of defensive value by playing both second base and shortstop.

There were ups and downs during his big league stint, including a pretty nasty spill that resulted in a stint on the disabled list, but Gurriel Jr. also had a pretty historic run in the middle of his campaign.

On July 11th, the 24 year old went 2-4 against the Atlanta Braves, picking up a pair of singles in the contest. What we didn’t know then was that Gurriel would go on a historic tear at the plate, picking up two or more hits in every start for the rest of the month of July.

It resulted in an 11 game multi-hit streak, which is a new MLB rookie record. He also beat Tony Fernandez‘s previous franchise record of nine consecutive games, and pushed for the all-time mark set by Rogers Hornsby at 13. Had the talented rookie not been injured in that 11th consecutive game, who knows how long he could have kept the hot hand going.

It’s looking highly likely that he’ll get the first crack at being the everyday shortstop in Toronto next season, and I very much look forward to seeing what he can do over the course of a full season. His raw talent is very obvious, and he should be one of the many reasons to tune in to Blue Jays game next season.

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