If this was the lineup that the Jays were sending out against a left-handed pitcher I might not be so enthused, but as it is, with Opening Day starter Marco Estrada on the bump and the Jays showcasing a rather Opening Day-like lineup against Phillies right-handers Aaron Nola, um… hot damn!
Sure, sure, we could quibble about some of the ordering, and Melvin Upton is in there against a right-hander, which isn’t ideal. But it’s not like Ezequiel Carrera is any better against right-handers — HEYO! — plus, I think for a while we might just have to get used to the idea of the Jays using the free money that is Upton to see what they’ve got. (Plus he missed some time with the shoulder thing, so having him in there tonight makes even more sense.)
And while I hesitate making too much of a Grapefruit League lineup, having Steve Pearce in at first base over Justin Smoak is very, very comforting. They can say that the issue is Pearce throwing the ball in the outfield all they want, but combine that convenient fact with Justin Smoak looking veeeeeery Justin Smoak-like all spring (he’s 9-for-46) and it sure seems like the #StevePearceIsActuallyTheir1B train is moving ahead of schedule.