The Jays take the ol’ B-squad to Lakeland in order to get pummelled into oblivion by Justin Verlander, seen above in the role of Rich Dick Wendels. He squares off with Brandon Morrow, who bounced back from a bit of a rusty spring opener to throw two shutout innings in his last start.
“I felt in rhythm, and I was a lot more aggressive to my spot with the ball, which obviously the results were better,” said Morrow following last Thursday’s outing against the Yankees in Tampa. Let’s hope those good feelings continue today, though… y’know… after the terrific spring Ricky Romero put in ahead of his clusterfuck of a 2012, it’s not like anybody us under any illusions that it really matters.
Meanwhile, team Dominicana remains in the area, squaring off with the Big Hirok and the Yankees at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa at 1 PM, once again featuring Jose Reyes in the lead-off spot, with Edwin Encarnacion today three spots behind him, hitting cleanup. Later, out in Arizona, Team Canada takes on the Cincinnati Reds in a tune-up of their own.
Mike Wilner tweets that John Gibbons said today that there is one bullpen spot up for grabs, unless Casey Janssen has to start the season on the DL. What he didn’t say, however, was who was earmarked for those jobs already apparently set in stone. Janssen, Sergio Santos and Darren Oliver are obvious. Steve Delabar would seem to be the next most obvious name, then after that I’d might guess the guys who are out of options– Esmil Rogers and Brett Cecil in particular– have the inside track, though it wouldn’t shock me if it’s Aaron Loup instead of Cecil or Brad Lincoln instead of Rogers, either.
Maybe I should rethink that Cecil/Loup stuff, though, because we have more bullpen stuff from Wilner, who tweets that Gibbons also said that the two lefties aren’t necessarily competing for the same job. “Cecil could be mutli-inning guy, Loup not seen that way,” he adds.
And one more from Wilner, who tweets that John Gibbons is taking a hands-off approach when it comes to the oft-confused Adam Lind. ”What am I gonna tell him?” the manager asked. Figure it out yourself, Adam.
Brandon Morrow won’t be throwing to his old college roommate today, who was revealed to be, by John Lowe of the Detroit Free Press, Tigers outfielder Brennan Boesch.
Brendan Kennedy of the Toronto Star talks about the players leaving the Jays for the Global Honkbal Spectacular, and how the team has been left to make do, which… hang on. It’s make do, not make due??? No shit, eh?
Lastly, in case you missed it yesterday, I tackled all kinds of goodies– from whether the Jays should extend Josh Johnson now, to how much rope Colby Rasmus can be afforded, to how the bullpen should stack up on opening day– in this week’s edition of the ol’ hijacked Griff Bag.
TV: None. The game can be heard at MLB.com, featuring either the Tigers crew from WXYT (if you have an MLB.tv subscription), or what I’ve so far found to be the thoroughly enjoyable pairing of Wilner and Dirk Hayhurst.
You can watch the visuals of the Dominicans’ WBC warmup against the Yankees via MLB.com, though not this evening’s Team Canada tuneup against the Cincinnati Reds, either.
And now the lineups…
Toronto Blue Jays
A. Gose CF
R. Davis LF
M. Izturis 2B
A. Lind 1B
A. LaRoche 3B
R. Langerhans RF
L. Jimenez DH
J. Thole C
L. Zawadski SS
B. Morrow RHP
A. Jackson CF
T. Hunter RF
V. Martinez DH
P. Fielder 1B
A. Dirks LF
J. Peralta SS
J. Kobernus 2B
D. Worth 3B
B. Holaday C
J. Verlander RHP