WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO LET'S PLAY BALL!
Finally, it's here. Happy opening day everyone! We made it through what felt like a year of spring training and we have arrived at the start of meaningful baseball. You will hear talk from people on how real meaningful baseball doesn't start until late August early September for the season. Don't believe them. Every game counts the same in the end and this is the start of our playoff drive. PLAYOFFS!!1 Woo!
I'm currently watching the Prime Time Sports crew sitting on the field at the Dome. Everyone is saying .500 except McCown who says absent any major injuries we are an 88 win team. I suddenly like him a little bit more. This new Blackberry broadcast studio that they have for Jays connected in the Rogers Centre looks great too.
Today we are taking on the Twins, last year the Twins took the Central with a 6 game lead over the ChiSox. They finished with a strong 94 wins which equals a .580 winning%. They start the year with a few question marks namely the health of Morneau and Mauer. If those two don't come back strong this team may be in some trouble. Everyone may remember that Morneau got his concussion in a game against the Jays last year. A complete accident of course but he was having a great season at the plate to that point and it completely sidelined him for the rest of the season and most of the spring this year. Concussions are really scary things.
Our opening day pitchers today will be Ricky Romero taking on Carl Pavano for the Twins. Last year Ricky built on his strong Rookie season by bumping off the sophomore slump. He finished with a strong 14-9 record 3.73 ERA 1.29 WHIP all while increasing his K/9 to 7.5 and decreasing his BB/9 to 3.5. Pavano who is now 35 and entering his 13th season in the bigs. Last year he had a bit of a renaissance finishing 17-11 in a full (healthy!) season, he had a 3.75 ERA, 1.195 WHIP, he didn't really strike a lot of people out with a meager 4.8K/9 but his BB rate was fantastic at 1.5 BB/9.
#24 / Pitcher / Toronto Blue Jays
Nov 06, 1984
#48 / Pitcher / Minnesota Twins
Jan 08, 1976
That is a fantastic picture for Pavano.
Today word came out that Aaron Hill's 3 year option was not picked up, the Jays still have the option of picking up the 2 year option after this year. Really this probably shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone. There was no chance the Jays were going to risk the 3 year option with how Hill did last year. Now as mentioned in the intro thread Hill is my favorite player so I am pulling for him to bounce back.
The Jays will throw the lineup that we all saw near the end of Spring, Davis and Escobar lead us off, followed by the heart of lineup Bautista, Lind and Hill. In the back part of the lineup we have Encarnacion, Snider, Rivera, and Arencibia finishing us off.
Tune in after the jump for full lineups.
SBNation's Lineup widget isn't working yet. So here are some lineups courtesy of Wilner on Twitter
#Twins Opening Day line-up: Span8, Nishioka4, Mauer2, Morneau3, Young7, Cuddyer9, Kubel0, Valencia5, Casilla6
#Bluejays Opening Day line-up: Davis8, Escobar6, Bautista9, Lind3, Hill4, Encarnacion5, Snider7, Rivera0, Arencibia2
Remember to Keep it Civil and GO JAYS GO!