* Of the four Toronto Blue Jays pitchers they faced on Tuesday afternoon in St. Pete, the Canadian Junior National Team was in agreement on who the toughest arm was: prospect Aaron Sanchez. ....
By Bob Elliott
ST. PETERSBURG - The Blue Jays sent out Brandon Morrow, Sergio Santos, Steve Delabar and Aaron Sanchez against the Canadian Junior National Team Tuesday afternoon.
Who was the best of Morrow (three innings, four hits, one earned run), Santos (one inning, one hit) Delabar (one inning) and Sanchez (four innings, two hits)? We asked the juniors.
The foursome had combined for 14 years in the majors in 594 games with 997 strikeouts as well as 58 wins and 51 saves, although Sanchez had yet to make his major-league debut.
And we asked them to fill in the blank, he was the toughest I’ve ever faced since ...
Luke Horanski, of Dugald, Man., who singled off Morrow: “Sanchez, toughest since my first pro at-bat when the Langley Blaze went to Arizona last year.”
North York’s Gareth Morgan, who singled off Morrow: “Sanchez. He had the heat. He got me for a backwards K, toughest since Jose Valerde last fall in Orlando.”
Mississauga’s Josh Naylor, who was hitless: “Sanchez. He threw hard and he had all his pitches. I had to ask the catcher, 'was that a change?' He’s the best I’d faced since ... Morrow or Shonei Otani of Japan in 2012 at the Worlds.”
Etobicoke’s Robert Byckowski, who went hitless: “Sanchez. He had a 93 MPH sinker that dropped almost a foot, toughest I faced since a Houston Astros guy last year.”
Mitchell Robinson, of Surrey, B.C, who singled off Morrow and Santos: “Sanchez. The best since we went to Arizona and faced a Milwaukee Brewers guy.”
Orleans’ Demi Orimolye: “Sanchez. He threw me two fastballs and I struck out on a curve ... best since Adonys Cardona against the Jays last fall.”
Jean-Francois Garon, of Terrebonne Que., who singled off Morrow and struck out against Delabar: “Delabar. He had great control of his pitches and threw hard ... toughest I’ve faced since Scott Downs when he was on a rehab assignment with the Atlanta Braves last year.”