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.
Boston Red Sox: 50-39
New York Yankees: 45-41
Tampa Bay Rays: 47-43
Baltimore Orioles: 42-46
Toronto Blue Jays: 41-47
The Blue Jays wrapped up the first half of the season with a terrible showing on Sunday. The blowout overshadowed what was actually one of the best weeks the Jays have had recently. Toronto took a series win from the New York Yankees and managed a series split with the Houston Astros, one of the best teams in the game.
Despite the hot start, the Blue Jays are playoff long shots. They remain last in the division at 8.5 games behind the Red Sox for first. Additionally, they are five games and seven teams out of WC contention. The Blue Jays will face off against the Tigers after the All Star Break. Before that, fans can enjoy seeing Justin Smoak and Roberto Osuna celebrate their first ASG appearances. Osuna was added late this week after being named AL’s top reliever for June.
Marcus Stroman has been speculated by multiple sources as available at the deadline. After his weekend start against the Astros, it is easy to see why. That said, he is likely not going anywhere, as the Blue Jays should only need to retool to make them contenders next season. Some argue they can still be this year. If the Jays do end up selling, the impending Free Agents are likely the first to go. With more than three weeks to go, the likes of Marco Estrada and Francisco Liriano could recoup much of their lost value.
The Winds of change are blowing in Toronto. With the break, Jays fans can catch their breathe and steel themselves for the future.