Being young can have its advantages.
In baseball, it sometimes doesn’t help, but this youthful Toronto Blue Jays team has used their youth and energy to overcome a lot of odds this season, and it was enough to find their way into this year’s playoffs.
Toronto will make the postseason without a single player who has been in the Majors for 10-plus years. That hasn’t happened in 105 years, and only two other times in Major League history - the 1912 Red Sox and 1915 Phillies.
Some of the key member of the Blue Jays that are at age 27 or younger include: Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette, Rowdy Tellez, Cavan Biggio, Danny Jansen, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Teoscar Hernández and Nate Pearson. The team looks ready for long-term success. They will get their first chance at the playoffs next week.
For now, there is one series left in the regular season with the Baltimore Orioles. After clinching a playoff berth on Thursday night after their win over the New York Yankees, the Blue Jays really looked relaxed on Friday night in their 10-5 win over the Orioles at Sahlen Field.
Toronto came out swinging and grabbed a stranglehold of the game right away in the bottom half of the second inning. It started with a Randall Grichuk bomb to left field, which gave Toronto a 1-0 lead. Jansen next came through with an RBI single, which was followed by a sacrifice fly from Jonathan Villar to give Toronto a 3-0 advantage. The very next batter, Bichette had an RBI single of his own that made it 4-0, and then Toronto got a two-run single from Hernandez, which gave the Blue Jays a 6-0 lead over the Orioles through just two innings.
In the third, Jonathan Davis and Jonathan Villar each had RBI singles, which put the Blue Jays in front 8-0 after just three innings.
In the fourth, Travis Shaw belted a two-run home run to give the Blue Jays a double-digit lead at 10-0.
Pearson showed why he's another youngster for the Blue Jays with a lot of promise going forward. The 24-year-old came out of the bullpen and got some work in on Friday, as he is finally healthy and should be available to pitch in the playoffs. Pearson immediately let his presence known. His first pitch of the game was clocked at 100 mph. He struck out his first batter faced in three straight pitches and his third pitch came in at 101.5 mph. Pearson pitched 1.2 innings, struck out two batters, gave up one hit and one walk.
With the win, the Blue Jays now guarantee themselves a winning record for the 2020 season. Toronto’s last winning season came in 2016, which was the last time it clinched a playoff berth. That season, Toronto had an 89-73 record.
For a full box score, click here:
- Toronto pitcher Hyun Jin Ryu threw seven scoreless innings on Thursday night. It was his longest scoreless start since his last game with the Los Angeles Dodgers back on Sept. 28, 2019. Over his last 10 starts, Ryu has allowed just 12 earned runs in 58 innings pitched for a 1.86 ERA. Ryu became the first Toronto pitcher to pitch into the seventh inning since Aug. 22, 2019 when Jacob Waguespack did so at the Dodgers.
- The Blue Jays continued their dominance of the Orioles this season. They improved to 7-1 in their eight meetings.