Holy Smokes Batman! Toronto Blue Jays Casting Call
Dec 13, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; A man dressed as Batman talks with patrons during the game between the Charlotte Bobcats and the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena. The Hawks won 113-90. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports
Watching the Toronto Blue Jays so far this year has been like watching a Batman trilogy. With high expectations and a big budget, this year’s squad was supposed to be a box office hit. So far the early returns have been mediocre, but that’s why you can’t judge a movie while the opening credits are still rolling. That’s about the point we are at this season. But after another tough loss to the Baltimore Orioles last night I figured why not see if the 2013 “Batman” Blue Jays have the characters to be a hit.
April 9, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Toronto Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista (19) sits in dugout against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Jose Bautista as Bruce Wayne
Not much else you can say about Bautista. He’s been one of the best players in baseball for years now and is obviously the star of the Blue Jays show. Even when he’s not 100% Jose sucks up the pain and plays for the good of the team. He’s the closest thing to a Superhero the Blue Jays have. His injuries make him even more Bruce Wayne-like but when the game starts he puts on the cape and mask and turns in “Bautistaman”.
Apr 21, 2013; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Munenori Kawasaki (66) celebrates with a fan after scoring in the first inning against the New York Yankees at the Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
Munenori Kawasaki as Robin
This role may be up for casting later in the season, but for right now Kawasaki is holding it down as the trusty sidekick. The tiny shortstop has great baseball intangibles that make up for his general lack of ability. Last night against the Orioles he saw 22 pitches, by far the most on the Blue Jays. He knows his role and I doubt he even hit a home run this year but his promotion to top of the lineup against righties for the time being makes him our perfect Robin.
Apr 17, 2013; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons looks to the field against the Chicago White Sox at the Rogers Centre. Chicago defeated Toronto 7-0. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
John Gibbons as The Penguin
I have to give credit to Justin Jay for inspiring this post – hopefully we can follow it up with some Photoshop goodies. Justin started calling him the penguin for the way he waddles to the mound so we figured based on last night’s performance it was okay to villainize him for at least today. He plays the Penguin (Danny Devito style) for our flick. Gibbons is hesitant with his bullpen and half of Toronto told him to start Kawasaki leadoff so I’m not even going to give him credit for that. But if this continues he could become the villain in our plot. I am a huge fan of matchups and don’t mind burning through arms, you always risk the chance of extra-innings but there are certain situations that must be managed. I have never been a fan of the “do-nothing” method – it might not work out but I would rather go down swinging than looking. But then again maybe I have watched too much of Jim Leyland in recent years.
May 30, 2012; Toronto, ON, CANADA; A wide angle view of the Rogers Centre and CN Tower during a game between the Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
Toronto as Gotham City
Before I get fried for comparing Toronto to Gotham City, please bear with me. I live here and love this city. Toronto is one of the best places in the world to call home. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. But sports fans in this city are intense and the Blue Jays were supposed to be our saving grace. Early in the season boo’s ran down from the Rogers Centre rafters. This city needs a winner. If the Toronto Maple Leafs win the Stanley Cup the Blue Jays could suck for the next decade and my guess is no one here would care. But until that happens Toronto has been a gloomy place for sports fans. Frustration has sometimes overtaken logic. But Toronto sports fans are smart and if all goes to script “Bautistaman” and the Blue Jays can still save the city.