No AL East Opponents For A While


May 5, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre (29) celebrates with right fielder Nelson Cruz (17) and center fielder Craig Gentry (23) and shortstop Elvis Andrus (1) after hitting the game winning walk off single against the Boston Red Sox in the ninth inning at the Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The Rangers won 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY SportsOne of the major flaws in MLB is the unbalanced schedule. Not every team faces each other an equal amount of times but instead you play teams in your division 76 times!

That’s really not fair if your favorite team plays in the AL East because they have to face stiffer competition while other teams win more games and take playoff spots because of an easier schedule.

So sometimes it’s nice to get a break from that harder schedule.

The Toronto Blue Jays don’t play an AL East team again until June 21st. In other words their schedule just got a tad easier for the near future.

It certainly doesn’t start off easier though.

The Jays start their AL East break with 4 games against the Atlanta Braves.

The first 2 games are in Toronto and the last 2 in Atlanta. The Braves are the hottest team in baseball coming off an 8 game win streak that just ended in their last game. They have an overall record of 30-19. I’d prefer it if they were on a 9 game win streak going into their series with the Jays just because what are the odds of them winning 10 games in a row? Worse than the odds they lose 2 games in a row.

The Jays don’t have a natural rival in the National League since the departure of the Expo’s so they get stuck playing the Braves almost every season because they played each other in the 1992 World Series. I appreciate that they had a World Series battle 21 years ago but the Braves are as good as anyone in baseball so I’d rather see the Jays play the Orioles any day.

The Braves are also the only non NL West team the Jays play this season in interleague play. Why couldn’t it have been against the Marlins schedule makers?!?!

Speaking of the NL West it’s one of the weaker divisions in baseball so the Jays are lucky the majority of their interleague games are against that division. That includes a series against the Padres in San Diego after the Braves series. The Padres are 22-27 playing in the NL West so the Jays should be able to win that series.

Then they go to San Francisco to play a 2 game series with the Giants. According to Pat Tabler during a Sportsnet broadcast the Jays are going to get matched up against the Giants 2 aces Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner. So it’s not going to be a cake walk for the Jays the way it was when the Giants started Barry Zito and Ryan Volgesong against them in Toronto earlier this season.

The Jays have 2 series against the Rangers in June, one in Toronto and one in Texas. The Rangers are one of the best teams in baseball again this season and have been one of the best teams the last few years. You don’t win 90+ games for multiple years with a couple of World Series appearances without being one of the best. Just like the Braves I’d rather just see the Jays have another series with the Orioles then watch them try to hold their own against the Rangers.

The Jays also have a series against the White Sox and a series against the Rockies.

The Jays have owned the White Sox for quite some time now so they’ll look to do the same in that series. It helps that the White Sox seem to be the same old hovering around 500 White Sox.

The Rockies were projected to be one of the weaker teams in baseball but they’re 27-23 right now. Hopefully they’re just overachieving to start the season so the Jays can help them get on board the regression train.

After the Jays extended AL East break they go right back to 3 straight series against AL East teams. Whether not playing AL East teams for a while actually ends up helping the Jays in the standings or not it’s always nice to take a break.