GDB -16.0: Toronto Blue Jays open Spring Training week against Tampa Bay Rays

Photo credit:© Brent Skeen-USA TODAY Sports
Zach Laing
1 month ago
Mitch White will take the mound Monday morning for the Blue Jays, as they kick this week’s Spring Training schedule off against the Tampa Bay Rays.
The Jays will run a young lineup, featuring names like Nathan Lukes, Spencer Horwitz, Cam Eden, and Ernie Clement — the latter of whom who is having an excellent Spring Training. Clement is making noise at camp this year slashing .381/.409/.619 and a 1.028 OPS across 21 at-bats, hitting one home run and driving in four runs.
As our own Tyson Shushkewich opined this morning, Clement has earned himself a spot on the opening-day roster.
Given the current roster outlook, should nobody get traded or any surprise options arise, there is likely one bench spot up for grabs. If this goes to Clement, then the Blue Jays would be without a left-handed bat off the bench, whether that is Vogelbach, Votto, Barger, Lukes, or Horwitz, which seems like an issue for a right-handed heavy lineup that the Jays currently employ. Should the club wish to keep Clement and one of the left-handed batters on the active roster, another roster move would be needed to accommodate bringing both on the roster.
This would likely require either one of Santiago Espinal, Davis Schneider, or Cavan Biggio to start the year in the minors, as all three players have options available compared to Clement, Vogelbach, and Votto (who instead either have opt-out clauses or are in camp on MiLB deals). To make room for a LHB and Clement, one player has to be removed from the roster, whether that is via trade or option. There is no guarantee on what the club will do until closer to the end of Spring Training and one can weigh the pros and cons for an article in its own right, but one thing is for sure, Ernie Clement should be on the Opening Day roster one way or another.
Whether that is another player beginning the year in triple-A or the Jays deciding to not bring a left-handed bat on the bench, Clement has been on a hot streak at the plate so far this spring and if the Blue Jays are planning to bring the best players to Tampa to start the year, #28 should be with them.

First pitch: 1:05 p.m. EST — TV: Sportsnet.
Odds via Betano:
Moneyline: TOR +155; TBR -192.
Spread: TOR +1.5 -139; TBR -1.5 +112.
Over/Under: o7.5 -110; u7.5 -111.
*Odds available at the time of writing. Odds subject to change.

Starting pitchers:

TORONTO — RHP Mitch White
RAYS- RHP Zach Eflin


  1. C Biggio (L) 2B
  2. D Jansen (R) C
  3. D Vogelbach (L) DH
  4. D Schneider (R) LF
  5. N Lukes (L) RF
  6. E Escobar (S) 3B
  7. S Horwitz (L) 1B
  8. E Clement (R) SS
  9. C Eden (R) CF
  1. Y Díaz (R) 1B
  2. B Lowe (L) 2B
  3. H Ramírez (R) LF
  4. A Shenton (L) 3B
  5. A Rosario (R) RF
  6. J Caballero (R) SS
  7. J Siri (R) CF
  8. A Jackson (R) C
  9. R Pinto (R) DH

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Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at zach@thenationnetwork.com.


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