Meanwhile, Biagini has mind put at ease by Montoyo

The Toronto Blue Jays dropped a pair of split-squad pre-season games on Saturday.

Toronto lost 4-3 to the Baltimore Orioles at its home spring-training facility and dropped a 17-7 decision to the New York Yankees in Tampa, Fla.

Infield prospect Bo Bichette had a good day against the Yankees, going 2-for-2 with a double and a walk.

Justin Smoak, Richard Urena and Kendrys Morales hit home runs for the Blue Jays.

Toronto starter Thomas Pannone took the loss, giving up six hits and six runs in 1 2/3 innings. Former Jay J.A. Happ got the win for the Yankees, going three innings while giving up three runs and four hits.

Against Baltimore, Jays starter Sam Gaviglio gave up two hits and two runs while striking out five in 3 2/3 innings.

The Blue Jays (9-10) play host to the Minnesota Twins on Sunday in Dunedin, Fla.

Manager Charlie Montoyo uncorked that formation when the Phillies outfielder made his spring training debut against the Blue Jays last week. It was the first time in his major-league career that Harper had confronted a four-man outfield. And he did not like it.

But, with a lefty on the mound in Borucki, Montoyo had someone else in mind as a double or triple threat — Rhys Hoskins, who had tattooed a ball that cleared the tiki bar roof in left field last time these teams met.

Montoyo had played it coy with reporters before the game on the hitter that would face the shift. Though he provided a hint. “The data is like 70 per cent, 75 per cent in the air against left-handers.”

With the recently signed Clay Buchholz some three weeks behind the rest of the pitchers, Borucki will begin the season in Toronto’s rotation, though Montoyo hasn’t told him directly yet. “Nobody’s really told me much,” Borucki said.

Peace,

Burke.

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