DUNEDIN, Fla.—It will be another summer in the sun for Toronto Blue Jays infielder Omar Vizquel, his 24th to be exact.
Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos made the announcement moment after defeating the Baltimore Orioles 9-3.
“We have told him that he will make the team,” said Anthopoulos of Vizquel, “We haven’t formally added him to the 40-man yet . We had told everybody that when we made the decision we were going to do it.”
“He (Vizquel) will be taking (Luis) Valbuena’s spot on the 40-man roster,” Anthopoulos continued, “If something is to change in the next week, someone gets hurt he will find himself on this team. If not we’ll try and find a home for him.”
All though Vizquel wasn’t available to speak with the media after the game his numbers have spoken for themselves.
A bunt single leading off the fifth gave him a 1-2 day at the plate raising his spring average to .433. that has seen his play short, second and third.
Vizquel has played for Seattle, Cleveland, San Francisco, Texas and Chicago (AL) prior to making Toronto.
As a 11 time gold glove winner and three time All Star Vizquel will turn 45 in April is also fourth all time on the list for hits by a switch hitter in major league baseball. He is 159 short of the magic three-thousand number.
In game action Ryan Tepera got the win going 4 2/3 innings allowing two runs on four hits while striking out three on 80-pitches 52 for strikes.
The loss went to Dana Eveland who gave up three runs on six hits and struck out one on 51-pitches, 34-strikes.
JP Arencibia and John Tolosiano each had two hits for the Jays while Jason Esposito had two hits to lead the O’s
ORIOLES NOTES: The Orioles starting lineup had uniform numbers dominated by the 70—plus category. The six minor league players in the lineup averaged 85-plus causing one Baltimore sportswriter to comment that it was fitting for a football game.
BLUE JAYS NOTES: Jays President and CEO Paul Beeston held an impromptu to press conference prior to the game. “I’m pleased with the way the off season has gone, there is a sense of confidence and a bit of swagger,” said Beeston. “(Manager) John (Farrell) is in his second year and Alex (Anthopoulos) is in his third year and there are very comfortable in their positions. …Farrell spoke about RHP Dustin McGowan on Wednesday, “We’ll back him off till he feels no discomfort (right foot, planters fasciitis), no additional stress. “ The Jays only need a fifth starter once till the middle of April. …As to the status of Inf. Omar Vizquel Farrell said, “We’ll have something on him shortly.” Because of Vizquel’s major league status even though he is in camp on a minor league contract a decision by the Jays must be made five days prior to the opening of the major league season.