Blue Jays American League East Recap: Stumbling out of the Gate

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Apr 9, 2017; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons (5) looks on from the dugout against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 9, 2017; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons (5) looks on from the dugout against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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Apr 9, 2017; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons (5) looks on from the dugout against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 9, 2017; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons (5) looks on from the dugout against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

Each week, Jays Journal will take a look at the bigger picture of the American League East to help frame not only where the Blue Jays are in the standings, but why they are there.

Baltimore Orioles: 4-1
Tampa Bay Rays: 5-2
Boston Red Sox: 3-2
New York Yankees: 2-4
Toronto Blue Jays 1-5

The season did not open as hoped for the Blue Jays on opening week of the 2017 season. The Blue Jays managed just a single win and ride a three-game losing streak into an off day on Monday. Sunday’s 7-2 loss to the Rays was the only game where the Jays lost by more than 2 runs. Starting the season in a 3 game hole is never ideal, but the Jays have a lot to be positive about. The Jays pitching staff looked like it’s 2016 self, the bullpen pulled more than overtime and did excellently. And the Jays offense has demonstrated how potent it could be.

The Jays started the season without star closer Roberto Osuna, and the injury bug has since bitten JP Howell and Josh Donaldson was removed from today’s game. All of this could negatively affect the team going forward, but what needs to happen most is for the offense to wake up. The Jays have shown flashes of power over the last week. If they can start cashing in the multiple runners left on base, as our own Matt Graves discusses here, then the Jays can start helping out their excellent pitching staff.

Final Takeaway:

The Blue Jays have played just 3% of their games this year, to jump to conclusions this early would be an exercise in futility. That said the Blue Jays have shown definite areas of improvement and will need to do that sooner rather than later.

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