Blue Jays vs. Orioles: Who has the upper hand in a position-by-position breakdown?

Graeme Wallace
Baltimore Orioles v Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles v Toronto Blue Jays / Kevin Hoffman/GettyImages
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Outfield

The Blue Jays have created quite a buzz with their new-look outfield. With a clear goal of improving run prevention, the trio of George Springer, Kevin Kiermaier, and Daulton Varsho shapes up as on of the best defensive outfields around and should produce plenty of offense as well.

Baltimore’s outfield of Austin Hays, Cedric Mullins, and Anthony Santander combined for 65 homers in 2022, with Santander accounting for 33 of those. Mullins had a huge 2021 season and regressed some last year but still has great speed, and decent power, and can cover a lot of ground in the field. Austin Hays’ numbers also were down a bit last year but he’s an above-average hitter. 

Advantage: It's a tie

Starting Rotation

The Jays beefed up their rotation with the addition of Chris Bassitt. Two pitchers will have a major impact on the success of the O’s rotation, John Means and Kyle Gibson. Means has been solid since finishing second in ROY voting in 2019 but was limited to just eight innings in 2022. Gibson was terrific for the Rangers in ’21 but back around his mediocre career numbers a year ago.

Advantage: Blue Jays

Bullpen

Both teams have gotten a shot in the arm with recent additions to their respective relief corps. The Jays added Erik Swanson in the Teoscar Hernández trade, and Baltimore signed Mychal Givens, who was previously with the club between 2015 and 2020.  

Jordan Romano has established himself as one of the premier closers in the majors. Félix Bautista excelled in the same role after Jorge López was dealt. Considering how close some of their games have been, the bullpens could play a huge role in the outcome of next year’s season series.

Advantage: Blue Jays

Although the Jays appear to have the upper hand in many of these categories, the Orioles also seem to be greater than the sum of their parts, and should be viewed as dangerous. Whatever the individual performances may be, these will be fun games to watch in 2023.

Next. A look back at the first 18 months of the Ross Atkins Era. dark

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