After another frustrating series, this one at the hands of the Boston Red Sox, the All-Star break couldn’t come at a better time for the Blue Jays.
Everyone knew coming into the season that it would be extremely difficult to compete with the Yankees and the Red Sox in the American League East. The Rays and Orioles were supposed to be 4th and 5th place, the Yankees and Red Sox were supposed to be battling for 1st place all season, and the Blue Jays were supposed to be somewhere in the middle.
As of the All-Star break, they’re not even that. With the Tampa Bay Rays currently 5.5 games ahead of Toronto, the only team the Blue Jays are better than is the leagues’ last place team, the Orioles. Not ideal for a team who insisted on competing in 2018.
With the Blue Jays 23.5 games behind the Red Sox for first in the division, it’s pretty clear this season is lost. But with a bright future to build around, and good trade assets to sell before July 31st, not all is lost. With names like Cavan Biggio, Bo Bichette, and of course, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in the farm system, it’s hard not to look forward to the future in Toronto. Staying with the big club though, let’s take a look at what’s gone down since Opening Day.
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Known for having slow starts to the season, the Blue Jays were rolling come seasons start. After 20 games, the Blue Jays had an impressive record of 13-7. There was hope. The Blue Jays may actually make the playoffs again. Then May came along.
The Blue Jays had a record of 9-21 in the month of May. Excited to flip the calendar to June, they had a mediocre record of 14-16 in this month — it should be noted that the Blue Jays did have a four game series against the Orioles in June as well.
July has come, and so has the All-Star break. After a frustrating series against the Red Sox, Marcus Stroman had some choice words for his teammates.
Stroman pitched the finale of this four-game series, in which he went five innings, giving up four runs, three of them earned, and walked a batter. This entire season has been frustrating for Stroman. Marcus has been dealing with right shoulder fatigue for majority of the season, leading to him owning a 2-7 record and 5.86 ERA. Some fans are calling for a trade because what we’re seeing this season is the “real Stroman.”
With intriguing trade chips such as J.A. Happ, Seunghwan Oh, Ryan Tepera, John Axford, and Josh Donaldson if he can get on the field and regrow his value, the Blue Jays may be in for a heavy haul this trade deadline.
At this point in the season, many Blue Jays fans are just waiting for 2019 and calling for a Vlad Jr. promotion to the big leagues. Whatever goes down in the second half of the season, the Blue Jays have a bright future ahead.