Oct 2, 2015; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays second baseman Ryan Goins (17) slides into third base as he hits a 2-RBI triple against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
The Rangers are Streaky
Up until now I’ve used a lot of statistics and numbers, but the Blue Jays gifted them to us, it would be a shame not to mention them. Every player experiences a slump, a light bat, a ‘dead arm’ whatever you’d like it to call it. The Rangers over the past two months have been firing on all cylinders, but even then they lost games due to people failing to contribute. If the Rangers are on, they are on, and represent the team that deservedly won the American League West Pennant. When they are off, they look more like the team that we saw them back in April.
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The Rangers don’t always rebound after a loss, in fact they dropped multiple games in a row 35% of the time during the second half. Meanwhile the Blue Jays only suffered back to back losses three times during the second half, showing a remarkable resilience to bounce back. The Rangers have had their share of success, but when they are down, they are down. The Blue Jays have suffered no such profound dip in productivity. They’d brush off a loss and come charging into the next day.
Furthermore if key Rangers are slumping, it has a pronounced effect on the lineup. The Blue Jays rarely run into that issue. If Bautista or Donaldson is slumping, Smoak or Pillar is there to pick them up. The Blue Jays as a team have the magic allure that no matter the difference, they can always come back. 2015 has seen us go from lamenting Pillar and Goins at bats, to being dazzled by them. There is no week spot in the Jay’s starting 9, and if someone’s down, someone is right there to pick up the slack. The Rangers often have a hard time holding on to the early momentum they establish. So while the Rangers are indeed hot right now, their cool offs are normally pretty profound. This will be even more amplified in the Playoffs, especially when the Rangers are playing their first two games in front of the Ninth Man.
Next: The Ninth Man