The Toronto Blue Jays enter play on Wednesday at 83-68, four games back of the Boston Red Sox in the American League East
With two quick wins in Seattle thanks to Marco Estrada and an offensive outburst, the Blue Jays are looking “normal” again. For a team with the talent that Toronto rosters, normal is just fine, too.
This afternoon the Blue Jays will look for the series sweep over the Mariners, which would further solidify their place atop the American League wild card race while keeping them in the division picture.
Here are some stories that you might have missed from earlier this week:
Beeston is back (sort of)
Paul Beeston was recently named President Emeritus by current Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro. Andrew Hendriks breaks it all down, including what the new title means, in this piece for the Canadian Baseball Network.
The road to October
Extra baseball has an impact on a city. The hot dog vendors and street performers can squeeze some extra earnings out of a season, nearby bars keep their crowds, and as Shawn Jeffords of the Toronto Sun writes, road work (including a closure of the Gardiner Expressway) gets delayed.
“As luck would have it, and I guess this will involve a measure of good luck on another front — that weekend would be Games 5 and 6 of the American League Championship taking place with any good luck at the Rogers Centre,” said Toronto mayor John Tory. “If that’s the case, we’re studying now moving (the closure) to the rain date for the following weekend.”
The Jays Nest Podcast, Episode 91
After my two-week hiatus, where I was covering the Paralympics in Brazil, I’m back in the co-pilot’s seat alongside Shaun Doyle of Jays From the Couch. On this week’s episode, we talk about the Blue Jays’ recent slide and how we’re all handling it. Brett Cecil’s increased role is up for discussion and we enjoy another edition of Shaun’s “Fill in the Blank” responses. Check out the new episode and subscribe below to have it delivered to you each and every week.
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The Jays’ Nest Podcast- Talking Toronto Blue Jays – Jays Nest #91- Toronto Blue Jays Fan Reactions, Bullpen & Wild Card!
Runners on the move
When you think of the Toronto Blue Jays, base running doesn’t jump to mind. Last year, however, the Blue Jays were a very efficient team on the bases, especially when it came to steals, and earlier this week Shi Davidi spoke to first base coach Tim Leiper about the importance of keeping opponents on their toes.
“Even if we weren’t doing anything, the threat was there,” Leiper said of the 2015 team. “People get hung up on the numbers and things like that, but it’s sending the message to teams that you’ll take advantage of things when you allow them to. That’s what we’re trying to do (this year).”
If you watched one inning of J.A. Happ pitching, you wouldn’t know that he was a 20-game winner. Eno Sarris explores that idea in a recent FanGraphs piece and looks at the veteran left-hander’s “secret”. It has a lot to do with how his four-seam and two-seam fastball cooperate with one another, and offers some excellent insight into the success of one of 2016’s best free agent signings.
The Toronto Blue Jays have set a record at the plate. Just… not one you’d hope for. As Ian Hunter explains in this piece for the Canadian Baseball Network, the Jays have set a new franchise record for most strikeouts in a season as a team, already surpassing the previous high from 2002.