The red-hot Jacoby Ellsbury was unavailable today with an ankle injury and it showed. Drew Hutchison and Aaron Sanchez combined for a one-hit shutout in a 2-0 win over the Yankees this afternoon at Rogers Centre in Toronto.
Hutchison was dominant in the victory, facing five batters over the minimum over his seven innings of work. He struck out nine, walked two, and hit two batters. The lone hit was a double by Mark Teixeira in the fourth inning. Rookie right-hander Aaron Sanchez took over in the eighth and retired all six batters he faced with three strikeouts for his first career save.
Jose Bautista provided the only offense of the afternoon with a two-run homer off Michael Pineda in the first inning. He has now gone deep in four straight games and has 28 homers on the year.
The win moves the Blue Jays back to one game over .500 at 68-67. The loss dropped the Yankees to 70-64 on the year, putting them three games back for the second Wild Card spot in the American League.
Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.
On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.
Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.
Nick Groke of the Denver Post reports that the Rockies agreed to a $200 million, 30-year lease with the Metropolitan Baseball Stadium District, which is the state division that owns Coors Field. As part of the deal, the Rockies will lease and develop a plot of land south of the stadium, which will cost the team $125 million for 99 years.
As Groke points out, had the Rockies not reached a deal by Thursday, March 30, the lease would have rolled over for five more years.
Rockies owner Dick Monfort issued a statement, saying, “We are proud that Coors Field will continue to be a vital part of a vibrant city, drawing fans from near and far and making our Colorado residents proud.”
The Rockies moved into Coors Field in 1995. It is the National League’s third oldest stadium. In that span of time, the Rockies have made the playoffs three times, the last coming in 2009 when they lost in the NLDS to the Phillies. The Rockies were swept in the 2007 World Series by the Red Sox.