Blue Jays Morning Brew: The Blame Game
Several people are trying to make sense of the less than stellar start to the 2015 season for the Toronto Blue Jays. After a month of baseball, they are sitting just under .500 and the excitement of the impending season has taken a hit. And, while it may be rather obvious as to why they are not performing as well as we’d hoped (we’re looking at you, pitchers) there are a few takes on where the blame lies. Let’s take a look.
Jeff Blair of Sportsnet.ca argues that none of the struggles from rookies like Daniel Norris, Dalton Pompey and Miguel Castro are actually surprising. He says that it is what happens when you thrust such important roles upon youngsters. Bob Elliott agrees at the Sun. What else did we expect? Well, he has a point. Would we have been happy if Pompey had started in AAA and Ezequiel Carrera had started the year with the big league club to give Pompey more time? Likely not. But, what is surprising is the speed with which the Blue Jays made these moves. Is a month (or less for some) enough time to struggle and try and come out of it?
In his blog at the Star.com, Richard Griffin assigns blame for the early struggles from the Blue Jays. He says it is a result of not addressing the bullpen over the offseason. Griffin highlights the teams that are contending (yes, it is only the beginning of May) and points to the success that their bullpens are having. The Royals, Yankees and Astros are all in positions to contend thus far. While the Blue Jays bullpen is near the bottom of the league in opponents batting average, these three teams are not. While additions to the ‘pen would have been nice, it is really the rotation that has been the disappointment (as Griffin says). James Shields would look nice right about now, no? I’m kidding…sort of.
Speaking of the starters, Mike Wilner of Sportsnet.ca tries to make us feel better about the performances from the members of the rotation. They’ve been bad, yes. But, Wilner reminds us that they can’t sustain this level of under performing for an entire season. As well, he points out that even with this terrible starting pitching and the unreliable bullpen, the Blue Jays still sit just below the .500 mark. This is fairly good considering. He adds that this is the same record the club had last season, but ended May in first place. While Wilner tries to offer calming arguments, the issue is that right now, they Blue Jays may need a month like they had last year to lead this division. That is a lot of pressure.
Toronto Blue Jays
Returning to Jeff Blair for a moment, we hear that the recent trip to Fenway Park resulted in a change in rules surrounding the visitors’ dugout. Apparently, now the visiting team will have to wait to go into the walkway until the umpires have left. This comes from the altercation that took place following the 4-1 loss on Wednesday. This incident also led to the suspension of hitting coach, Brook Jacoby (who had a hand in blaming the loss on bad umpiring) for 14 games. With coaching staff, even during an appeal, coaches are not permitted in the dugout unlike players.
Finally, our Jeff Morten joined the Yanks Go Yard radio show to discuss the series against the Yankees. It was a good show. Host, Ricky Keeler does a great job of examining the Yankees. Check it out. And don’t forget, to catch all of our episodes of our podcast, Jays’ Nest, you can find us on Stitcher (for Android) and iTunes. If you’d rather watch our show, check us out on YouTube. If you like what you hear, please be so kind as to give us a good rating. Thanks! As always, you can tune in live on Google Hangouts to interact with our panel with questions, etc during our LIVE broadcast. We would also love to respond to your questions/ comment son air. You can submit them to @JaysNestPodcast of to JaysNestPodcast@gmail.com.