Blue Jays: Good years with bad Aprils

Sep 14, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays second baseman Devon Travis (29) is greeted by designated hitter Jose Bautista (19) after scoring against Tampa Bay Rays in the first inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 14, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays second baseman Devon Travis (29) is greeted by designated hitter Jose Bautista (19) after scoring against Tampa Bay Rays in the first inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports /
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May 29, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays former player and alumni Carlos Delgado acknowledges the crowd during the 40th season ceremonies before a game against the Boston Red Sox at Rogers Centre. The Boston Red Sox won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
May 29, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays former player and alumni Carlos Delgado acknowledges the crowd during the 40th season ceremonies before a game against the Boston Red Sox at Rogers Centre. The Boston Red Sox won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports /

1998- 3rd in AL East (88-74)

The 1998 team didn’t make the playoffs, and perhaps a stronger April would have made the difference for the club (no, I’m not arguing with myself here). Still, they’re a great example of how it’s possible to turn things around after a poor start.

The ’98 team was managed by Tim Johnson and the club finished with a record of 88-74. They were bolstered by the likes of Carlos Delgado, Roger Clemens, Shawn Green, and an older Tony Fernandez, on one of his several return trips to the Blue Jays roster.

Clemens would go on to win the Cy Young for the second straight year as a Blue Jay, dominating the league as a 35 year old, before leaving for the New York Yankees that offseason. Delgado also had a monster year, hitting .292/.385/.529 with 38 home runs and 115 RBI. Shawn Green also chipped in 35 home runs and 100 RBI as well, as the two of them lead a fairly potent offence.

The team went 10-16 in April, digging themselves a nice little hole to work out of throughout the season. They were able to make up some ground in May, finishing 18-11, and also played very well down the stretch, going a combined 34-18 over the season’s final two months.

Unfortunately they were just a little shy of reaching the postseason, which was a shame for such a talented group. Delgado in particular never reached the playoffs as a Blue Jay, which seems like an unfortunate waste of his tenure in the organization.

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