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Toronto Blue Jays

Stadium: Rogers Centre | Manager: John Gibbons
Team RankingAVGRHRERA
Blue Jays.2597231774.00
AL East1st1st2nd4th
American League 3rd4th2nd8th

Schedule

*
Wed Mar 4
W 4 - 1at PIT
Recap
*
7:05 pm EST
Today
at BAL
*
1:07 pm EST
Fri Mar 6
BAL
*
1:05 pm EST
Sat Mar 7
at PHI
*
1:07 pm EDT
Sun Mar 8
PIT
*
1:05 pm EDT
Mon Mar 9
at DET
*
1:07 pm EDT
Mon Mar 9
HOU
*
1:07 pm EDT
Tue Mar 10
MIN
*
1:05 pm EDT
Wed Mar 11
at BAL
*
1:05 pm EDT
Thu Mar 12
at TB
*
1:07 pm EDT
Fri Mar 13
BAL
*
1:07 pm EDT
Sat Mar 14
NYY
*
1:05 pm EDT
Sun Mar 15
at ATL

Standings

AL
East
LEAGUE
W-L
Overall
W-L
Toronto0-01-1
Tampa Bay0-00-0
Boston0-00-0
New York0-00-1
Baltimore0-20-2
1425512382
Blue Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman developing sinker this spring
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com

Blue Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman is hoping to have a better spring this year after struggling in 2014, reports MLB.com.

"I struggled all last spring, I wanted to make the team so bad," Stroman said following his debut during the Blue Jays' 4-1 win over the Pirates on Wednesday. "I feel a lot different. I feel much more relaxed, I'm focused. I know what I have to do rather than doing everything in my power to go out there and try to make the team, doing more than I had to. So I'm relaxed, I'm motivated, I'm ready to go. I'm excited for this year."

Stroman heads into the 2015 campaign looking to add another pitch, a sinker.

"I've always wanted a sinker," Stroman said. "If you can have a sinker, all hitters say that's one of the hardest pitches to hit when it's located. So it was not that I needed another pitch to make an adjustment, it was more so that I saw it as a weapon I never had that I wanted to add to my arsenal."

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Fantasy Analysis | 1425482682
Spring Observations: The legend of Marcus Semien grows
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer

This RBI single for Marcus Semien was just the least of his contributions Tuesday. (USATSI)
This RBI single for Marcus Semien was just the least of his contributions Tuesday. (USATSI)

We're always told spring training doesn't matter, that we shouldn't pay attention to it if know what's best for our Fantasy teams.

Well, I think that's a bunch of baloney.

At the very least, it's a cop-out. Sure, most of it doesn't matter. For established players with no threats to their playing time, injury concerns or known mechanical issues, spring training is just a red herring. But spring training was also our first clue last year that Melky Cabrera was back to form and that Jacob deGrom was more than the scouting reports let on. Rather than pick out a few interesting nuggets and risk them being misconstrued as more than just food for thought, it's easier to have a blanket policy for the whole thing. "Nope, none of it matters. Check back again in late May."

Really? This is the first baseball most of us have seen in months. Asking a true fan to ignore it is cruel and, frankly, unrealistic. "If they're going to do it anyway, they can at least do it under adult supervision." That's what all the "cool" parents said in high school, right?

Bad comparison, but you get what I'm saying. So periodically throughout this spring, I'm going to review game action from the day before, picking out the five items that I believe are of greatest concern to Fantasy owners. And I'll do my best to couch them in a responsible way.

1. Marcus Semien makes his presence known.

Semien didn't hit just one home run in his first look as the Athletics starting shortstop, but two, effectively ending whatever competition existed there before it even began. OK, so maybe he goes hitless the rest of spring training and makes us wonder what the hype was all about, but given that he's a breakout for Al Melchior and a sleeper for me, I'm only emboldened by the performance.

2. Aaron Sanchez gets off on the wrong foot.

Depending in part on his performance this spring, Sanchez could begin the year as either the Blue Jays fifth starter or just a bullpen arm. Or I guess their closer, which would probably the best scenario for his own individual value, but it would be a net loss for Fantasy owners since it would eliminate Brett Cecil as a perfectly capable closer while also eliminating Sanchez as a sleeper starter. Sanchez says he was just working on his curveball, but considering the Blue Jays have already said they'll decide his role by mid-March, he doesn't have that luxury.

3. Jung Ho Kang goes oppo boppo.

Observe.

This from a player who hit .356 with 40 home runs in the Korean Baseball Organization. Of course, no one thinks he'll be that good, but how many middle infielders can hit the ball out in that direction with such ease? And oh yeah, he started at shortstop, which is the position nobody seems to think he'll be able to play in the majors.

4. Devon Travis whiffs in his first chance.

The Blue Jays don't have a starting second baseman. They have Maicer Izturis, who has impersonated one in the past, but if they wanted him starting there, they wouldn't have acquired Travis, a major league-ready second base prospect, from the Tigers this offseason. It's a good sign he got the start Tuesday, but it's not so good that he went 0-for-4. If he wins the job, I'm thinking he's at worst a speedier version of Scooter Gennett.

5. More of the same from Ubaldo Jimenez.

Granted, the Orioles don't have an opening in their starting rotation, but for as much as they're paying him and as good as he was two years ago, Jimenez could probably force his way in with a strong spring. Allowing five earned runs in 1 1/3 innings isn't going to make it happen. When Madison Bumgarner says he was just working on his pitches and didn't care about results, you can take his word for it, but Jimenez has a little more at stake.

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1425447475
Blue Jays' Martin: Pirates 'were going to do everything they could'
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com

Blue Jays catcher Russell Martin says the Pirates did everything they could to try and re-sign him, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Martin signed a five-year, $82 million deal with Toronto, but said the Pirates really pushed to keep him around. "They were going to do everything they could," Martin said. "They were pretty vocal about that. But then it comes to a point where, as an organization, if you're thinking business-wise, you can't stack all your chips and then leave yourself vulnerable for later."

Martin also admitted that the opportunity to be a role model in Canada was a big reason he signed in Toronto. "The opportunity to play in Canada, for my family to be able to watch me play, to be a role model for younger Canadians and be that guy, it's a better fit for me overall for that reason," he explained.

In the end, the money and a fifth year led Martin to the Blue Jays. "[The Pirates] were pretty vocal, and I think that they definitely wanted me back. It was just a feeling that Toronto wanted me a little bit more," he said.

The 32-year-old hit .290/.402/.430 over 379 at-bats last season.

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1425434092
Blue Jays' Steve Delabar embracing competition in camp
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com

Blue Jays pitcher Steve Delabar is embracing the competition for a roster spot, according to MLB.com.

"If I was locked in as the go-to guy in the 'pen or if I'm the last guy in camp, I'm here to compete," Delabar said. "I always say I'm going to put more pressure on myself than any staff member here, because we all want to be perfect every time out."

Delbar was a sure thing to make the 25-man roster last season, but had some issues in 2014. He's now in a competition to earn one of the team's open spots in the pen. 

Delabar explained that the goal for him succeeding was making sure he kept his fastball down. "If the ball gets up, it doesn't matter how fast it is, it's going to get hit," Delabar said. "Fastball down, fastball location, coming later into games you're going to have to spot up a little better. That just comes with a little more reps and work, and then we'll get to that point."

Delabar posted a 4.91 ERA over 25 1/3 innings last season. 

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1425421068
Blue Jays' Aaron Sanchez gets off on the wrong foot Tuesday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com

Blue Jays pitcher Aaron Sanchez had a tough start to open spring training on Tuesday.

Sanchez gave up five runs, two earned, on four hits over 1 1/3 innings during the start. Sanchez was able to get the first two outs on the game with no issue, but gave up a two-out single to Gregory Polanco. The next batter reached on an error, and Sanchez proceeded to give up a three-run homer to Pedro Alvarez. 

He ran into trouble again in the second. After a quick groundout, Sanchez allowed a walk, single and two-run double to the next three hitters. He was pulled from the game at that point.

The 22-year-old is competing for the fifth spot in the team's rotation this spring. 

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2014 Team Leaders
AVGMelky Cabrera , LF.301
HRJose Bautista , RF35
RBIJose Bautista , RF103
OBPJose Bautista , RF.403
SLGEdwin Encarnacion , 1B.547
RJose Bautista , RF101
SBJose Reyes , SS30
WR.A. Dickey , SP14
ERAMark Buehrle , SP3.39
WHIPR.A. Dickey , SP1.23
KDrew Hutchison , SP184
SVCasey Janssen , RP25

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