Stroman named Blue Jays' Game 2 starter

Stroman named Blue Jays' Game 2 starter

TORONTO -- Marcus Stroman has gone from the guy who was once ruled out for the season to the guy who will be matched up against left-hander Cole Hamels in Game 2 of the American League Division Series.

• Postseason schedule

Game Date Result
Gm 1 Oct. 8 TEX 5, TOR 3
Gm 2 Oct. 9 TEX 6, TOR 4
Gm 3 Oct. 11 TOR 5, TEX 1
Gm 4 Oct. 12 TOR 8, TEX 4
Gm 5 Oct. 14 TOR 6, TEX 3

The Blue Jays officially announced Tuesday evening that Stroman will get the ball in Game 2 against the Rangers, which is scheduled to take place Friday afternoon at Rogers Centre (12:30 p.m. ET on MLB Network/Sportsnet).

Stroman made four starts for the Blue Jays after he returned from surgery in March to repair a torn ACL in his left knee. Despite the long layoff, Stroman was borderline flawless, allowing five runs and striking out 18 over 27 innings (1.67 ERA). Toronto will go with No. 1 starter David Price vs. right-hander Yovani Gallardo in Game 1 (Thursday at 3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, Sportsnet).

"To me, it was just an obvious choice," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said of Stroman for Game 2. "David and him, back-to-back, really your top two guys in a lot of ways. We feel good about the four that are in there anyway, and he hasn't been here long, but really he has dominated the outings that he's had."

Stroman has faced the Rangers once before in his career, and he picked up the win back on July 19, 2014. In that start, Stroman didn't allow a run or a walk while striking out five over seven innings.

Right-hander Marco Estrada and knuckleballer R.A. Dickey are scheduled to pitch Games 3 and 4, respectively. There had been one line of thinking that Dickey should have been considered for Game 2 because his numbers are much better at home (3.11 ERA) than on the road (4.83 ERA).

The Blue Jays don't seem too concerned about the discrepancy. It would have been an issue if Toronto was matched up against a team that played in a cold-weather environment such as the Yankees but it should be less of a concern in Texas.

"Not a lot of that went into the decision," Gibbons said. "We were looking at, 'Hey, let's run our top two out of the gates, and if you need them later in the series, they're there.' You think about that other stuff, but I'm not sure we dig that deep really."

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.