Blue Jays: Why I’ll hold off on buying a Vladimir Guerrero Jr. jersey
Over the years I’ve collected quite a few different Blue Jays jerseys, but after a terrible run of luck, I won’t be buying a Vladimir Guerrero Jr. jersey any time soon.
Since I have an abundance of time, I went through my closets and a couple old boxes of clothes yesterday. Exciting news here I know, but it’s at least a little bit relevant because I came across a few of my old Blue Jays jerseys. It also quickly reminded me about why I’ve become a little superstitious when it comes to buying jerseys.
For those rolling their eyes already, I’m fully aware that superstitions are foolish and that they defy logic. However, I also feel like I’ve cursed a few recent Blue Jays by purchasing their jersey. Allow me to explain.
I didn’t find the first jersey from this streak while I was cleaning, and who knows where it ended up. However, it all started with the purchase of a Vernon Wells jersey in roughly 2007. I remember it well because it wasn’t that long after he signed his long-term extension, and my thinking was that I’d wear his jersey since he’d be around for a while. However, it was fairly soon after that Wells’ value cratered and the Blue Jays eventually managed to get the Angels to take on most of his salary.
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The next one I picked up was Travis Snider, and this time I was sure I had added a jersey to my collection that I could proudly wear for years. I mean, I’ll still throw that bad boy on without hesitation, but needless to say, his career didn’t work out like so many of us thought would.
After Snider, things start becoming more clear to me because of how ridiculous this superstitious bad luck became. My next one was a Ricky Romero away jersey that I purchased during his 2011 All-Star season. I remember this because the following season he fell apart, and by 2013 he had made his last MLB appearance. Sorry Ricky.
By now I had clued into my run of bad luck buying jerseys even more (and subsequently cursing the player almost immediately), but I still mostly dismissed it as folly. The logical part of my brain still says it’s ridiculous, but then I think about the next jersey I bought. I bet you may have already guessed it, and yes it was Brett Lawrie. I purchased that one after his 4.5 bWAR season in 2012, and things went quickly downhill for the Canadian infielder as well.
After Lawrie I left it alone for a little while, but I couldn’t resist the temptation to pick up another jersey during the 2016 playoff run. This time it was the “Bringer of Rain” Josh Donaldson, who had won an AL MVP the year before and was smack dab in the midst of his prime. He was still a valuable contributor when he was healthy for 113 games in 2017, but then the 2018 season campaign along and the Blue Jays sold him for pennies on the dollar because of lingering injury problems.
After Donaldson I decided that enough was enough, and I couldn’t curse my beloved Blue Jays anymore. I bought another jersey in 2018 when I saw a sale, but this time I was relieved and very happy to pick up a throwback Joe Carter jersey. I figured there was no way I could curse the career of a retired player, so I decided I was safe.
And then came last year, and I got a phone call from a friend of mine who wanted to sell me a jersey he’d won at an auction. One of those “I’ll give it to ya for a smokin’ deal”, and “I thought of you right away” since it was a Blue Jays jersey. I asked him who it was, and I said no before I even heard what he wanted for it. That, and I know him well enough to know what he considers a “good deal”. But when he said, “It’s a Vlad Jr!”, I politely declined. Even if I know that I can’t actually curse a jersey by buying it, I don’t think I can chance it again with a generational talent like Guerrero Jr.
So I guess this is my ridiculous existence when it comes to Blue Jays jerseys, at least for the time being. Maybe I’ll try testing the water with a Danny Jansen or even a Cavan Biggio, but for now I’ll be leaving the Vlad Jr. jerseys for the rest of you.