Barney, Stroman push Blue Jays past Phillies

Barney, Stroman push Blue Jays past Phillies

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Blue Jays right-hander Marcus Stroman is expected to be the Opening Day starter in April, and he took his first step toward that in Tuesday's Grapefruit League opener at Bright House Field.

Stroman allowed three hits and two runs in two innings in a 5-3 victory.

"My body felt unreal, my knee felt great," said Stroman, who missed most of last year following surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee. "My arm felt pretty good, too. My body is in a good position to go out there every fifth day now and get my work in."

Blue Jays shortstop Darwin Barney, who is expected to be a backup infielder, went 3-for-3 with a pair of two-run doubles in the game's first three innings and he drove in a fifth run with a single in the fifth.

Barney's second two-run double

Phillies right-hander Severino Gonzalez, who is expected to open the season in the Minor Leagues, allowed a two-out double to Barney in the first inning to give Toronto a 2-0 lead.

Carlos Ruiz tied the score in the second with a two-out single to center. J.P. Arencibia went 2-for-3 and homered in the fourth to make it 4-3.

Arencibia's solo home run

"He's swinging the bat well," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said of Ruiz. "He's trying to stay on top of the ball. He's been having some good swings lately. It was good to see."

Up next for Phillies: The Phils will take a short drive to Florida Auto Exchange Stadium in Dunedin, Fla., to play the Blue Jays on Wednesday at 1:05 p.m. ET. Right-hander David Buchanan gets the start as right-hander Vincent Velasquez and left-hander Brett Oberholtzer also are scheduled to pitch. The Phillies acquired Velasquez and Oberholtzer in the Ken Giles trade with Houston.

Up next for Blue Jays: Knuckleballer R.A. Dickey will take the mound when the Blue Jays open their home Grapefruit League schedule against the Phillies on Wednesday at 1:05 p.m. ET at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium. Dickey is making his return from offseason knee surgery to repair the meniscus in his right knee, but he has been feeling good this spring without any lingering side effects. Other pitchers expected to take the mound include: Aaron Sanchez, Jesse Chavez and David Aardsma. Toronto has yet to announce its starting lineup, but Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion and Troy Tulowitzki will all have the day off.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.