DUNEDIN, Florida – The Blue Jays fell to 4-4 in Grapefruit League play
following a 6-4 loss to the Pirates on Wednesday afternoon. Bart Starr Packers Jersey
Brandon Morrow allowed five runs on six hits over three innings. He
struck out two, walked one and hit a batter.
Edwin Encarnacion had a two-out, bases loaded two-RBI double in the
Here are some tidbits from camp:
SANTOS DEALING WITH UNCERTAIN FUTURE
Its an oft-repeated cliché but Sergio Santos really is approaching life
one day at a time. Almost traded during the offseason - according to
reports he was nearly moved twice - he continues to hear his name in the
"Its just been different or kind of out of the norm," said Santos. "I
try to keep as level-minded of an outlook as I can. I try not to look
too far ahead or try to think about things that I cant control."
Santos almost became a Texas Ranger in late November but a three-team
deal fell through. He went so far as to travel to Arlington to undergo a
physical and to meet with Rangers officials. Hes not hung up on it.
"Luckily I had some time to kind of let that sink in and its gone and Im
done thinking about it," said Santos.
Santos missed almost four months of last season due to surgery to remove
bone spurs from his pitching elbow. In 24 appearances from his August 1
return onward, Santos posted a 1.69 ERA and a miniscule 0.516 WHIP over
21 1/3 innings. He limited opposing batters to a .327 OPS. Put simply,
he was dominant.
In the final guaranteed year of his deal and with year over year club
options through 2017 ($6 million in 2015, $8 million in 2016, $8.75
million in 2017), hes a prime candidate to be moved because the bullpen
is considered a position of strength and others, like Steve Delabar,
have years of club control remaining.
"I think there are two sides that you can look at it, as other teams
really want you or you can dwell on the fact that the team youre on is
trying to trade you," said Santos. "At the end of the day Alex and
everybody with the Blue Jays is trying to make the Blue Jays as good of a
team as they can in 2014.
"Whether Im in those plans or not, like I said thats not in my control.
Would I like to be? Of course."
Closer Casey Janssen, dealing with stiffness in the back of his pitching
shoulder, played catch on Monday and woke up feeling good on Tuesday.
Hes hoping to throw a bullpen session soon, although there isnt a
"Just with yesterday, see how it is today and then I think we can start
preparing a plan but weve got to crawl before we can walk here," said
Janssen. "Well get there. Im not worried about the bullpens and stuff
like that. All I really care about is feeling healthy and if Im healthy
it comes back quick."
Janssen was limited in Grapefruit League play last season as he
recovered from shoulder surgery. He pitched successfully through pain
for much of the year, notching a career high 34 saves, a 2.56 ERA and a
NAVARRO, IZTURIS CONCERNED FOR FAMILY BACK HOME
Former Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez died last March 5. On the
one-year anniversary of his passing and with political unrest on the
rise in their homeland, Blue Jays Dioner Navarro and Maicer Izturis
spend a lot of time worrying about family.
"Its so frustrating," said Navarro. "Thank God theyre doing all good.
Theyve been through so much and its just sad and frustrating at the same
time. I know if we keep on praying and staying strong, eventually
things have to change."
Navarro grew up a block away from the presidential residence in Caracas,
known as Casa Blanca (White House). His parents, Frank and Rosa, and
his youngest brother Darrel still live in the home.
With a family of his own and business interests in the Tampa area,
Navarro hasnt returned to Venezuela since 2009. He flies his family to
the United States as often as possible.
Izturis hails from Barquisimeto, about a four-hour drive from the
capital, Caracas. His wife and children are with him and his brother,
former Blue Jay Cesar, is in Kissimmee attending the Astros camp, but
the rest of his family remains in the midst of the protests, which have
fanned out across Venezuela.
Its a chore just to get groceries.
"You can go but they drive very quick," said Izturis. "You go to the
supermarket and try to find out what you need. You need to go quick,
boom, boom, and thats no life, you know?"
Both players believe political change is coming to Venezuela. Theyre
hoping it comes at limited cost.
"Its such a beautiful country," said Navarro. "Weve got so much to offer
to not only ourselves but to the world. We keep on praying God is going
to do something really good for us."
The Blue Jays trimmed their major league roster by three, to 55, by
reassigning catchers Derrick Chung and Jack Murphy and pitcher
Luis Perez to minor league camp.
Perez, who underwent Tommy John elbow surgery in August, 2012, suffered a
setback in his recovery late last season and has experienced numbness
in the pinky finger of his pitching hand this spring.
Perez is out of options but is a certainty to begin the season on the
disabled list. Hell continue his rehabilitation in minor league camp,
which opened on Wednesday.
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Some games are just bigger than others and this is one of them. Four
games separate them for first place in the Atlantic. Tie-breaker at
stake, as well. A win by the Raps would be a major step with only 20
games to play beyond this one. Ray Nitschke Jersey .
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Van Riemsdyk, the younger brother of Toronto Maple Leafs forward and
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