The Blue Jays affiliate Vancouver Canadians have clinched the North Division Pennant, the first half pennant is the first in their history
While the Blue Jays are not having much success, their affiliate in Vancouver is enjoying sit atop their division and have clinched the first half pennant for the first time in their franchise history.
Their 20-17 record puts them one game up on the Tri-City Dust Devils, San Diego’s affiliate, who the Canadians hold the tie-breaker over. Thanks to some interesting rules, the Canadians have seven days to decide if they want to host Game 1 of Game 2 and 3 of the first round playoff starting on September 5.
The Canadians feature 2017 draft picks, Kacy Clemens and Logan Warmoth, who have been chipping in nicely with their bats.
For his part, Clemens is slashing .290/.403/.470 with 29 hits in 28 games, including 3 home runs and 24 RBI. Over his last 10 games, he’s collected 8 hits and 8 RBI. The highlight of this 10 games stretch is that he’s been red hot in his last 3 contests, collecting 6 hits, a home run, 7 RBI and 2 stolen bases. The 22 yr old first baseman sits on a .873 OPS and a walk rate of 15.1% to go with a K% of 17.6%.
Warmoth is actually outperforming Clemens. In 12 games, he’s slashing .358/.404/.547 with 19 hits. His OPS sits at .951 as he’s hit 1 home run and driven in 7. In fact, he has at least one hit in each game, dating back to July 10, where he picked up 2 knocks, including a homer and 3 RBI. When you’re hitting like this, you’re likely not seeing many walks, as is the case for the 21 yr old short stop. His walk rate is at 5.7%, while his K% sits at 17.1%.
Dalton Rodriguez threw 6 innings in the clinching game, giving up 4 runs, but kept his team in the game long enough for the offense to take over. The 20 yr old is having a rough season, with his ERA at 6.25. Rodriguez is a representative of the Canadians pitching staff so far this season. They’re putting up average numbers; enough to keep the bats within striking distance.
This combination hasn’t exactly made the Canadians a runaway team in the Northwest League. But, their 20-17 record is enough to give them the first half title. You don’t need to win by a lot, you just need to win, right? Sharlene Canning wrote an interesting piece on the clubhouse in Vancouver and how their closeness has created a family atmosphere, even though there are language barriers that go along with a room full of different cultures.
Noberto Obeso describes laughing, music and dancing as bonding experiences for the Blue Jays’ lone Canadian affiliate. If things continue this way, they can add winning to the list of things that bring them together.
The C’s wrap up July on the road before a weekend series at home against the Dust Devils. The Northwest League vs the Pioneer LEague All Star Game will take place on August 1 as the Hillsboro Hops will host.
*Featured Image Credit: Christopher Porter UNDER CC BY-SA 2.0
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