A Winning Formula
Brandon Morrow answered all the questions today and is ready to start the season as the Jays 4th starter. After giving up only a run on 5 hits with 6 strikeouts in 5 innings, Morrow was extremely effective and proved once again the Jays have the pitching talent to play at the .500 level in spite of their inexperience. Though he walked 3, Morrow threw 54 of 86 pitches for strikes and wasn't really hurt by the passes. If he can improve command even slightly he could be a dominating force on the mound this year with his mid 90's fastball overpowering hitters. Dana Eveland followed him for 3 innings and did throw strikes but gave up 5 hits and 2 ER.
Most everyone in the lineup had a hit and Hill continued his scorching bat with 3 hits and his 6th homer of the spring. Notably they hit better with runners in scoring position and Encarnacion appeared much improved with a homer and 4 RBI. Travis Snider showed a good eye at the plate and ended up on base 4 times as he took a couple of walks in addition to his 2 hits.
An insignificant 9th inning saw minor leaguer Sean Henn allow damage from a 3 run homer following an error by SS Jesus Merchan. This situation would have called for Casey Janssen or Jeremy Accardo under normal circumstances and would likely have had a better outcome. But give Henn credit for rebounding to limit further damage and get out of the inning.
Today's game is indicative of what we can expect from the Blue Jays this year. Effective pitching which frequently gives up less than 4 runs a game and enough timely hitting spread throughout the lineup to plate enough runs to win. It is a formula which will give us 80 or so wins and make us dangerous to teams expecting a cakewalk when playing us.