Toronto Blue Jays Season Preview: Looking at the starting rotation

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 04: Marcus Stroman
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 04: Marcus Stroman /
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Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays /

Marcus Stroman

While the 2017 season was a disappointment for the team, it was a breakout one for Stroman. In 33 games started, Stroman tried his best to carry the team, pitching 201 innings posting a 3.09 ERA, a 13-9 record, 164 strikeouts and a 5.7 WAR.

That was good enough for Stroman to finish eighth in Cy Young voting and he was rewarded with his first career Gold Glove Award. He most likely would have been named the opening day starter, but suffered a setback with inflammation in his shoulder.

He will be one of the pitchers starting in the Montreal series, which will be the final audition to see if he is ready to be a part of the rotation in the opening series.

It might be tough considering he has not had a lot of reps in spring training, but that does not seem like a major problem for the 26-year-old. As The Canadian Press reports, Stroman is not overly concerned by results before the season starts; rather he’s mostly focused on feel.

"“Just a matter of getting my body right,” he said when asked about what he wanted to accomplish in his second start of spring. “The arm felt great. Just another step to getting out there on the mound in season.”"

As Chris Henderson from Jays Journal wrote, the team has never seen both Sanchez and Stroman perform at their best in the same season. He also explains why it would be nice to see both compete as the alpha males of the rotation.

That is what makes the Blue Jays’ rotation one of the best in the American League, because they have two pitchers capable of being a top of the line starter.

If Stroman is able to get off on the right foot at the start of the season while Sanchez dominates right out of the gate, it would go a long way in helping the Blue Jays start April off in the right way.

Scott Cullen of TSN projects that Stroman will pitch 158  innings, post 10 wins, throw 128 strikeouts and have an ERA of 3.15.

Tip of the Tower projection: 196 IP, 11 wins, 3.90 ERA, 143 strikeouts.