Yusei Kikuchi’s spring training shutout streak comes to an end as Blue Jays drop both split-squad games to Phillies

The Philadelphia Phillies have finally gotten revenge for 1993.

They beat the Blue Jays by a score of 4-2 at home in Clearwater and they also pounded the Blue Jays by a score of 8-1 in Dunedin, earning themselves a Grapefruit League split-squad sweep. Flags fly forever!
Things worth mentioning…

Yusei Kikuchi had been perhaps the biggest story at camp for the Blue Jays, as he went 9 2/3 innings in his first four appearances of spring without allowing a run. Kikuchi’s spring shutout came to an end on Friday, unfortunately, as he walked the first two batters of the game, Brandon Marsh and Alec Bohm, and then allowed a double to Jake Cave. Kikuchi allowed one more run to score in the first frame on a sac fly but he settled down and found his groove after that. All told, he went three-and-one-third innings and allowed two earned runs on one hit and three walks while striking out three.

Kikuchi says he’s very happy with where he’s at right now, feeling free to let loose & attack hitters instead of thinking about mechanics.
Yusei did today’s post-game interview in English without an interpreter (after joking that I had to ask my questions in Japanese). #BlueJays
— Keegan Matheson (@KeeganMatheson) March 17, 2023

Following Kikuchi, Adrian Hernandez and Paul Fry both got knocked around and combine …

Read More

Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

The 2023 Blue Jays, Position by Position: Toronto has an embarrassing amount of depth for their bullpen

The Blue Jays’ bullpen has gotten better since the 2022 season but has also barely changed.

In fact, the Blue Jays have so much bullpen depth, that their Triple-A team’s bullpen is starting to look like a solid MLB team’s bullpen
In this article, we’ll look at the seven locks for the bullpen, pitchers who could fill the eighth spot, as well as the depth in the minor leagues… There are a lot of notable pitchers, so buckle in.
The locks:
Here we’ll look at the seven locks, as well as Chad Green who is rehabbing from Tommy John.
Jordan Romano:
The undisputed Blue Jays closer. Last season, Romano had a 2.11 ERA and a 2.82 FIP in 64 innings pitched, which was his best season overall. Moreover, he had a 28.3 K% (down from 33.6% in 2021) and an 8.1 BB%. Romano also registered 36 saves in 42 attempts. 

Jordan Romano, K’ing the Side. pic.twitter.com/Ot9wwvLBpk
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) September 27, 2022

I’d expect him to have an even better season in 2023.
Anthony Bass:
The 35-year-old was re-acquired by the Blue Jays at the 2022 deadline along with Zach Pop for Jordan Groshans.
Between the Marlins and the Jays, Bass had a 1.54 ERA and a 3.00 FIP in 70.1 innings pitched. To go along with this, he had a career-high 26.5 K% and his 7.3 BB% was one of the lowest in his career. Overall, he had a 19.3 K-BB%, the highest in his 11-year MLB career.

Here’s Anthony Bass (@AnthonyBass52)’ strikeout thread from this afternoon!
93 mph fastball!#BlueJays pic.twitter.com/684H41GzCY
— Brennan Delaney (@Brennan_L_D) February 28, 2023

His role is to be determined, but the addition of Bass was great.
Tim Mayza:
Mayza could potentially be the only left-handed reliever in the bullpen to start the season.

Tim Mayza vs Kevin Kiermaier in live BP #Bl …

Read More

Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

Outfield prospect Cam Eden has been invited to spring training

Another Blue Jays prospect has gotten a call-up for spring training.

According to Sports Illustrated’s Mitch Bannon, 24-year-old outfield Cam Eden has earned an invitation to spring training as a non-roster player.

#BlueJays announce they’ve invited CF Cam Eden to MLB Spring Training. He’s seen as one of the best defenders in the org and has elite speed, but struggled at the plate after a promotion to AA last year.
— Mitch Bannon (@MitchBannon) February 14, 2023

Eden played the majority of his 2022 season with the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats, slashing .215/.292/.376 with 10 homers in 306 plate appearances. However, he had a rather high 35.3 K%, much higher than his 22.9 K% last season in High-A.
Including his brief tenure in High-A Vancouver and Dunedin Blue Jays in 2022, his overall slash line stood at .233/.310/.408 with 12 homers with a 32.8 K% and a 7.9 BB%.

Cam Eden (@CamGo_Ham) wants to go home. His 10th homer of the season makes it 11-7 for New Hampshire.
Absolute nuke.#BlueJays #NextLevel pic.twitter.com/iADI2BxbsA
— Brennan Delaney (@Brennan_L_D) September 9, 2022

Where Eden excels is with his elite speed. On the base paths, he stole 36 of 41 bases in 2022. In fact, that was the third most stolen bases in the entire organization. He also uses that speed in centre field, as he makes tough catches look easy.
Drafted in the sixth round of the 2019 draft, Eden ranked as Fangraphs 34th best Blue Jays prospect heading into 2022.
The right-handed batting outfielder has an interesting blend of speed and pop, and has proven to have a low strikeout rate in years prior. It’s likely that Eden will start the season with the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons, but a repeat of Double-A isn’t out of the question.
It will be interesting to watch his spring training!
As always, you can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @Brennan_L_D.

Read More

Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation