Blue Jays: Restart the Vladimir Guerrero Jr. promotion watch
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is back on the diamond, participating in extended spring training and hopefully sooner than later making his way to the big leagues.
It’s been a bit of a mixed bag for the Blue Jays so far in their young 2019 season, with some early frustration mixed in with plenty of encouraging signs. The rotation hadn’t been scored on through the first four games of the year, and the bullpen has been mostly good too.
On the other hand, the offence has been pretty dismal so far, even if we’re not even a week into regular season play. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. has yet to pick up a base hit, Kevin Pillar finally got his first on the weekend, and Randal Grichuk did the same Monday night. Really, outside of Freddy Galvis and maybe Rowdy Tellez, the whole team has struggled at the plate thus far, even if the sample size is pretty small.
Hopefully a couple more games against the Orioles will help to get their bats on track, and even if they’re off to Cleveland after that to face their vaunted pitching staff, things are bound to get better as the season progresses. To that end, the Blue Jays saw an encouraging sign yesterday as well, as Shi Davidi reports that Vladimir Guerrero Jr. took the first step toward joining the big league club by participating in extended spring training.
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It’s going to be a while before we see the kid in the big leagues, but it’s certainly great news that he’s recovering well from the strained oblique he suffered earlier this spring. He’ll need to spend some time getting up to speed and then he’ll undoubtedly join the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons for at least a tune up before the Blue Jays promote him to the highest level.
The good news is we can start to think about that again. We can look forward to a boost on Charlie Montoyo‘s lineup card, and hopefully also at the Rogers Centre ticket booth. Granted they were playing the fellow expected basement dwellers in the Orioles on a Monday night, and both the Leafs and Raptors were in action, but the ballpark had just 10,460 fans, the lowest total since 2010. That’s definitely not a great sign so early in the campaign, even if you can’t blame fans for having a hard time accepting a rebuild.
One rookie isn’t going to change everything for the Blue Jays this season, even if he’s widely considered to be the top prospect in baseball. However, he’ll definitely give this team and this franchise the type of boost it needs when he arrives.
The shine of a new toy won’t be enough to pack the park by any means, but the good news is we an restart the Vladimir Guerrero Jr. watch and look forward to seeing the young phenom take on the best in the world. Based on the news on his progress at the moment, that day is one step closer.