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News » Toronto Blue Jays Notes, Quotes 2009-03-28

Toronto Blue Jays Notes, Quotes 2009-03-28

Toronto Blue Jays Notes, Quotes 2009-03-28
--RHP Matt Clement's bid to open the season as part of the Blue Jays' rotation ended when he allowed nine runs while not getting through five innings against the Twins. Clement, recovering from shoulder problems, was assigned to Class AAA Las Vegas. He was given time to consider the minor league assignment.

--The backup catching job -- Rod Barajas is the No. 1 -- has come down to Michael Barrett and Raul Chavez. Barrett is the better hitter, while Chavez is better defensively. If things had worked out, neither would be in the running; general manager J.P. Ricciardi said the club was interested in signing free agent Ivan Rodriguez but couldn't match the Houston Astros' $1.5 million bonus.

--The Blue Jays also missed out on signing free agent RHP Shawn Hill, a native of the Toronto suburb of Mississaugua. Hill, who was released by the Washington Nationals, instead signed with the San Diego Padres.

--2B Aaron Hill is looking forward to batting in the No. 2 spot in the lineup in 2009. "I've always seen myself in that role," Hill said. "I like being at the top of the lineup. I like being the guy the big boys drive in. I'd love to score 100 runs. How cool would that be? I thought (about it) the last couple of years. It would be neat to get 100 RBIs, but I'm going to let those guys do that."

--CF Vernon Wells, who missed most of spring training because of a pulled left hamstring, is back in the lineup in center field. Wells will open the season in center, choosing that option over being the designated hitter for a week to 10 days. Wells will, however, rotate into the DH spot from time to time with the other outfielders.

BY THE NUMBERS: 14 -- The number of players who have played shortstop for the Blue Jays since 2B Aaron Hill's rookie season in 2005. Hill is one of the players on that list.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "There's days when they're going to be really good. There's days when they're not going to be really good. That's the commitment you make when you go young." -- General manager J.P. Ricciardi on the ups-and-downs that go along with having young pitchers in his rotation.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: March 28, 2009

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