7:12 PM Eastern
The Blue Jays reeled off their tenth straight win, their 11th in a row without a loss, but what price victory?
Not much of a price, apparently. Brett Lawrie left the game after the third inning with tightness in his left groin, but he didn’t seem to think it was that big a deal and the Blue Jays are saying that he’s day to day and will be re-evaluated Saturday morning. He wasn’t scheduled to play Saturday anyway, and I’m thinking he’ll get at least Sunday off as well.
Lawrie beat out an infield single in the second inning, busting it up the first-base line as Ben Zobrist went up the middle to snare his chopper to second. Zobrist turned and threw in one motion, but wasn’t quick enough to get Lawrie, who then stole second off old friend Jose Molina. J.P. Arencibia cashed Lawrie with a line single to right to open the scoring, and it was on his way home from third that Lawrie felt something not right in his leg. He didn’t say “pull” or “grab” or anything like that, just that something didn’t feel right and he knew as he was gearing down after scoring that he should probably come out of the game. He played the top of the 3rd inning, but nothing was hit to him, didn’t come to bat in the bottom and Jonathan Diaz came out to play third in the fourth.
Lawrie says he’s had leg issues before, and that he knows that this can grow into something that will bite you later on in the season, so he doesn’t want to take any chances. He called it a light strain, no big deal at all, and he didn’t seem to be favouring anything while getting dressed after the game, which was a good sign.
Here’s what Lawrie had to say to the gathered media assemblage:
So it really doesn’t seem like a big deal, but the Blue Jays may be without their sparkplug for a few games. Unfortunately, the first televised game of the spring is this Sunday, March 18th. I can’t imagine Lawrie will be playing, which will disappoint some viewers.
Ricky Romero started for the Blue Jays and fought his command for the entirety of his four-inning stint. He threw 26 balls and 26 strikes, walking two and striking out four through four no-hit innings. Despite the control issues, Romero faced only one batter over the minimum and retired eight in a row at one point. Also, despite the control issues, Romero didn’t allow a single ball to be hit out of the infield. So even without his best stuff, the results were spectacular.
Here’s what Ricky had to say after his outing:
Travis Snider continued his red-hot spring, with a single off the glove of centrefielder Elliot Johnson as Johnson sprinted back towards the wall (a single because the runners had to hold up to see if the ball would drop) and a home run to right-centre off Jhonny Nunez in the 6th; his team-leading fourth homer of the Grapefruit season. Yunel Escobar and Arencibia pitched in with two hits each as well – each of J.P.’s drove in a run.
The Blue Jays will split their squad for St. Patrick’s Day, with half the team going to Disneyworld for a date with the Braves and the other half making the 10-minute run to visit the Phillies next door in Clearwater. Brandon Morrow will start against the Phils, and that’s the game we’ll have for you along the Blue Jays Radio Network (pre-game beginning at 12:30pm Eastern). He’s slated for four innings and will be picked up by Luis Perez and Rick van den Hurk for two each. Jerry Gil is scheduled to throw one. Over in Orlando, Drew Hutchison will start and Deck McGuire will piggyback – they’re set for three innings each, to be followed by Jesse Chavez, Robert Coello and Jim Hoey.
Here are the rest of Saturday’s travel squads:
To Clearwater – J.P. Arencibia, Yan Gomes, Jeff Mathis, Edwin Encarnacion, Kelly Johnson, Mike McCoy, Omar Vizquel, Ben Francisco, Colby Rasmus, Eric Thames, Brian Bocock, Brian Jeroloman, Jake Marisnick, Kellen Sweeney, Bobby Korecky, Aaron Loup.
To Orlando – Travis d’Arnaud, A.J. Jimenez, David Cooper, Jonathan Diaz, Mike McDade, Luis Valbuena, Chris Woodward, Rajai Davis, Anthony Gose, Travis Snider, Andy Burns, Michael Crouse, Ruben Gotay, Ricardo Nanita, Chad Beck, Scott Gracey.
Here’s the post-game scrum with John Farrell – he had good things to say about Chad Jenkins, who was sent back to minor-league camp after the game:
Remember to tune into the game tomorrow and Sunday, and please follow me on The Twitter – you can find me @wilnerness590.
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