Rosie DiManno: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is the Blue Jays’ early bird, and the early results are promising

DUNEDIN, FLA.—When Vladimir Guerrero Jr. came bounding into the dugout, he was all aglow and self-dazzled about having made a helluva defensive play at first base, going pogo on a bullet that had come off the bat of Shohei Ohtani at 101.9 miles per hour. The ball seemed destined to streak over Guerrero’s head, rattle around in right field, score a run.

But Guerrero’s outstretched glove snared it. So, sure, the 22-year-old Blue Jays first baseman was chuffed. Directing his glee at infield coach Luis Rivera, he crowed: “Man, I’m a good first baseman now! I’m telling you, I’m only gonna get better from now on.”

Yes, there is a seven-second delay on that bit of reportage. Well, 24 hours. Damn deadline on a game that dawdled for four hours.

The scene is worth revisiting, coming as it did right after Guerrero had opened the scoring in Thursday’s “home” opener at TD Ballpark with a gobsmacking home run, a 404-foot rocket over the centre-field wall that left contrails of 111.3 exit velocity, his second dinger of the season and the fifth ball he has hit harder than 110 m.p.h. in seven games, tying Giancarlo Stanton for most in the majors.

There were three ribbies in there, too, on Thursday against the Los Angeles Angels. Entering Friday night’s second episode in the four-game compliment, Guerrero was hitting 8-for-23 (. 348), with a double, two round-trippers, five RBIs, four walks, for a…

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