Highly touted Toronto Blue Jays prospecsts Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette made their spring training debuts on Thursday as the Jays rolled to a 9-3 win over the Baltimore Orioles in Sarasota. They didn't disappoint.
Guerrero Jr., who was hitting sixth for the Blue Jays, went 4-5 with four singles and two runs
He singled to right field on his first at-bat of the day and scored on a single by J.D. Davis later in the second inning to put the Jays on top.
Guerrero Jr. singled again in his third at-bat on a ground ball to centre in the top of the sixth inning. In the top of the 7th, Guerrero Jr. picked up another single to make him 3-4 on the afternoon, this off Orioles pitcher Tim Melville.
In the ninth, the 18-year-old phenom got his fourth hit of the day on an opposite-field liner to right.
Fellow highly regarded prospect Bo Bichette entered the game in the third inning as a pinch runner for Lourdes Gurriel. After grounding out in his first at-bat, Bichette picked up RBI singles in each of his next two plate appearances, adding a stolen base and a run.
“It was exciting. They both handled themselves like champs," manager John Gibbons said after the game.
Here is a closer look at each plate appearance for the duo:
2nd inning - Single to RF (1-1)
4th inning - Flyout to CF (1-2)
6th inning - Single to CF (2-3)
7th inning - Single to SS (3-4)
9th inning - Single to RF (4-5)
5th inning - Groundout to SS (0-1)
7th inning - Single to LF, scoring Anthony Alford (1-2, RBI, SB)
8th inning - Single to LF, scoring Roemon Fields (2-3, 2 RBI, SB)
Outfielder Anthony Alford also had a good afternoon at the dish, going 3-4 with two doubles, a triple and three runs, raising his spring OPS to an impressive 1.166.
Meanwhile, Aaron Sanchez was strong in his second outing of the spring, tossing three innings of one-run ball with five strikeouts.
It was the third outing of the spring for Sanchez, who threw three scoreless innings on Saturday in a win over the Minnesota Twins.
Sanchez had just nine starts last season after battling nail and blister issues for most of the year. He followed up a strong 2016 season with a 1-3 record and a 4.25 ERA in 36.0 innings, but said earlier this spring he is pain-free.
Newly-signed reliever Tyler Clippard is expected to make his Blue Jays debut on Friday, according to TSN's Scott Mitchell. Clippard was signed to a minor-league deal earlier in the week.
The club is hoping reliever Seung-hwan Oh will get his visa issues resolved in time to pitch at some point this weekend.
Starter Marcus Stroman (shoulder inflammation) played catch Thursday morning. The club will re-evaluate him on Friday.
The Jays will be back in action Friday as they host the Orioles in Dunedin.