Game 18: Toronto at Chicago pregame

Ah, Chicago. Coming here brings back all kinds of memories for me. I grew up about 20 minutes south of Comiskey Park…er, U.S. Cellular Field. I was a huge Cubs fan, though, in a family of Sox fans. My ma grew up not too far from old Comiskey back in the 1950s, used to tell me all about the Go Go Sox.

When I was young, my dad was a preacher in downtown Chicago. I used to skip church on some Sundays, hop on the 22 Clark Street bus and head to Wrigley. I’d buy an obstructed view seat, sit somewhere close until one of the little old militant lady security guards booted me out of the section. Good times.

But, enough about me… how ’bout them Blue Jays?

Prior to the game, Brian Burres had his contract selected from Triple-A and he’ll get the nod to start tomorrow against the Sox. Today, Jesse Litsch played catch for the first time since injuring his right forearm/elbow and he is on schedule to make a rehab start early next week. Ricky Romero (right oblique strain) hopes to play catch tomorrow.

Casey Janssen (right shoulder) will have a rehab outing in the Florida State League on Monday and could have two outings there before moving to Double-A. The schedule isn’t set in stone yet. Shaun Marcum (right elbow) is going to throw in a bullpen session in Kansas City — his hometown — on Thursday.

Was chatting with Jays assistant GM Alex Anthopoulos today in the visitors’ dugout and Dustin McGowan was brought up. Asked if McGowan’s diabetes was playing a role in the pitcher’s slow recovery from his right shoulder injury, Alex said, “Being a diabtetic hasn’t helped it, let’s put it that way.” This isn’t to say this is the reason McGowan is taking longer than expected to return, it’s just an added element to the situation.

When we first walked into the clubhouse today, Jose Bautista came up to us reporters sporting a new look. Gone is his full beard. Bautista trimmed up and now has the thin “chin strap” look going. “Hi, I’m the new player on the team,” Bautista said with a grin, shaking each of our hands.

Today’s lineups:

Thumbnail image for BlueJays.jpgTORONTO BLUE JAYS (12-5)

1. Marco Scutaro, SS
2. Aaron Hill, 2B
3. Alex Rios, RF
4. Vernon Wells, CF
5. Adam Lind, DH
6. Scott Rolen, 3B
7. Lyle Overbay, 1B
8. Rod Barajas, C
9. Travis Snider, LF

Starter: LHP Brian Tallet (0-0)




Thumbnail image for WhiteSox.gifCHICAGO WHITE SOX (8-7)

1. Chris Getz, 2B
2. Josh Fields, 3B
3. Carlos Quentin, LF
4. Jim Thome, DH
5. Jermain Dye, RF
6. Paul Konerko, 1B
7. A.J. Pierzynski, C
8. Alexei Ramirez, SS
9. Brian Anderson, CF

Starter: RHP Gavin Floyd (2-1)

~JB

6 Comments

I might just get used to watching the Jays hit like this! Off to a great start.

Tallet is the man.

Hi, I’m not new to the blogs but this is my first posting. I’m surprised with how good Tallet’s outings have been. The Jays’ rotation might not miss Litsch, Marcum and McGowan a lot, and they might have the pitching depth that’s required in this tough division to triumph.

rockbard that is for sure the Jays just keep turning up with new starters. Ever since the begining of 08 this team has shown great pitching depth.

It’s a great day to be a Blue Jays fan, we now have the best record in baseball at 13-5. But we also either are first or close to first in a number of categories in the American League

# at bats: first with 663
# of runs: first with 118
# of hits: first with 200
# of doubles: first with 46
# of triples:tied for second with 3
# of hr.’s: second with 29
# of rbi’s: first with 111
Team BA: first at .302
# of total bases: first with 339
Slg Av.: first at .511
Team OB P: second with .357
Team era: 3rd at 3.65
# of k’s first with 147
BA against: first with .230
Least # of errors: tied for first with 7

The other very impressive item about our offense is how well balanced it’s been. We have 8 guys with 2 or more hr’.s, and 10 guys with 7 or more rbi’s.

Great hitting, combined with good pitching and excellent defense, which is what The Jays have delivered in the first 18 games is extremely difficult to compete against. I expect if our starters stay solid, the rest will take care of itself. Let’s hope this outstanding level of play continues.

While it is hard to not be extremely excited about the great start, the fact that we haven’t begun AL East play begs for some perspective. On the other hand, Tampa Bay surprised everybody last year, so why not us this year….all the way to the post season. I say keep building momentum and roll right on into October.

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