Blue Jays Tee Off Against Tigers, and Justin Verlander Makes Spring Debut

It was a busy day of MLB Spring Training action on Saturday. Multiple teams exploded offensively, and two star pitchers made their spring debuts. Here’s a look at notable highlights from Saturday’s action.

Related: How the Rockies Bullpen Looks with Addition of Brad Hand

JV Suits Up For Mets

2022 AL Cy Young award winner Justin Verlander suited up for the first time as a Met on Saturday. In three innings, Verlander struck out three and gave up one run after Jean Segura hit an RBI double off the 40-year-old in the first.

That proved to be the lone blemish in what was a very impressive start. Verlander sat in the 94-96 MPH range with his fastball (per Bally Sports), and worked in his slider and curveball.

The Mets put up 15 in the game against Miami. Infielder Mark Vientos went yard twice and drove in five. Vientos is in competition for a spot on the Mets’ Opening Day roster.

Blue Jays Put Up 18

The Blue Jays’ bats were very busy on Saturday. Toronto defeated the Tigers 18-5 on Saturday, and that star of the day was infielder Vinny Capra. Capra went 2-4 with a home run and seven RBIs against the Tigers. Otto Lopez and Cavan Biggio also recorded multi-hit days.

For the Tigers, RHP Spencer Turnbull threw two innings on Saturday. Turnbull, who missed all of last season, struck out two and gave up a run in the loss.

Rays and Yankees Go At It

Tampa hosted a wild affair between the Rays and Yankees on Saturday. The Rays defeated the Yankees 14-10 in Grapefruit League action, thanks in large part to big days from prospects Curtis Mead and Kyle Manzardo. Mead cracked two home runs and drove in three, while Manzardo went 2-3 with two RBIs.

On the pitching side of things, Rays top prospect Taj Bradley threw another scoreless inning.

For the Yankees, OF Aaron Hicks is looking for a bounce back season after a difficult 2022 campaign. The switch-hitter belted his first home run of the spring on Saturday. Willie Calhoun, Rafael Ortega, and Trey Sweeney also went yard in the loss.

Peralta Makes 2023 Spring Bow

2021 MLB All-Star Freddy Peralta made his first start of the spring on Saturday against the Giants. Peralta threw two scoreless innings and struck out two in the 14-2 win by the Brewers. Peralta hit 96 MPH in the abbreviated outing.

It’s a good sign that Peralta, who threw just 78 innings last season, is healthy at this point of the spring. Given the injuries to Aaron Ashby (shoulder) and Jason Alexander (rotator cuff), Milwaukee’s depth will be tested throughout the early parts of the 2023 season — should a notable arm goes down.

Peralta was opposed by Giants ace Logan Webb. Webb threw three scoreless innings to start the game for San Francisco.

Leave a Reply