3 Blue Jays who are proving their Spring Training stats were flukes, 3 who were legit

Which Blue Jays players coming out of Spring Training became a totally different player in the regular season, and which ones showed that they could be consistent throughout?
Oakland Athletics v Toronto Blue Jays, Bo Bichette and Whit Merrifield
Oakland Athletics v Toronto Blue Jays, Bo Bichette and Whit Merrifield / Vaughn Ridley/GettyImages
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Alek Manoah

For Alek Manoah, things appeared to be on top of the world for the big man coming into the 2023 season. After all, he was coming off a career breakout year in 2022 in which he was an AL Cy Young finalist, along with being anointed the Opening Day starter for the ballclub this year, as he looked to continue that success furthermore in 2023. During Spring Training, everything appeared to be right on track for Manoah, as he posted a solid 2-2 record with a 3.10 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, giving up just seven earned runs with no home runs, eight walks and 21 strikeouts in 20.1 innings pitched. He even held his opponents to just a .216 batting average, so everything appeared to be perfectly fine heading into the regular season.

Then when the regular season rolled around, boy, was everyone surprised, including Manoah himself. Everything appeared to be falling apart for the Jays’ ace, losing his command and control, along with his confidence as the season progressed. It got so bad that eventually he was optioned to the minors in early June to rework his pitching mechanics, and to give him a chance to clear his mind to get back on track with his career. After a few weeks stint in the minors, Manoah made his way back up to the majors and has posted one good and one bad outing since his return.

For the season, Manoah has struggled to an eye-popping 2-8 record with a 6.18 ERA, an astronomical 1.84 WHIP, giving up 46 earned runs including 12 home runs, 47 walks and 56 strikeouts in just 67 innings of work. So what he showed in Spring Training was certainly a fluke, given that no one expected to see this version of Manoah during the regular season at all anytime, anywhere, and certainly there was no indication during his work in Spring Training that would have predicted this kind of outcome. Hopefully, Manoah can reverse back to his “fluke” numbers soon and revert to his once dominant form in due time.