Tulowitzki Shines in Blue Jays Debut

Welcome to Canada, eh.

Troy Tulowitzki, the 6’3″, 215-pound shortstop, quickly made himself at home after being acquired by the Toronto Blue Jays just a day ago.

Manager John Gibbons installed Tulowitzki into the top of the lineup with Devon Travis sidelined. He was a career 0-for-5 when hitting lead off before tonight.

I guess you can say it worked out.

Despite striking out in his first at-bat, the 27,000 plus people in attendance would go on to watch number 2 have a debut to remember.

His second attempt in a Toronto uniform would bode much differently. After going down 0-2, Philadelphia Phillies’ pitcher Jerome Williams threw a hanging breaking ball, the same pitch that struck Tulo out in his previous at-bat.

The second-deck shot put the Blue Jays up 2-0 early, but his job was far from over.

Digging into the batters box in the bottom of the fifth, Tulowitzki wasted little time, smacking a first-pitch double into the left-center gap. Josh Donaldson moved him over with a flyout to deep right field, and Jose Bautista drove him in with a line-drive single through the 5-6 hole.

Just like that, all was right in Toronto. The speculation that the Blue Jays didn’t need an upgrade at shortstop quickly came to a halt; suddenly not giving up prospects for a rental player became a genius move by GM Alex Anthopoulos. The Blue Jays have him locked up through 2020.

In the bottom of the sixth, Tulowitzki shot a first-pitch fastball over the center fielder’s head for his second double of the night, scoring Ryan Goins and giving him his third RBI.

Apart from his bat, Tulowitzki was locked in on defense as well. Whether it was ranging to his right to make a Derek Jeter-esque throw for a force out at second, or how smooth and comfortable he looked on the Toronto turf, the trade for the former rookie of the year has already begun to pay off.

Before he took to the Rogers Centre for the first time, number two said he was anxious to begin the next chapter in his career.

He finished the night 3-for-5 with a home run, two doubles, three runs, and three RBI. Toronto would go on to win 8-2, and push themselves back to .500 at 51-51.

Whether you were for or against the Tulo deal, it is time to embrace the best shortstop in baseball. This team and this city deserve an elite player to push them over the top, and if his debut is any indication, the two-time Gold Glove, five-time All Star may be just the player to do it.

Let the Tulowitzki era officially begin.

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