Toronto Blue Jays: A difficult but possible October hunt
By Nick Prasad
The season is slowly winding down and the Toronto Blue Jays sit in a spot where postseason play may be a possibility. What can go wrong on the way? What needs to happen?
We’re in that sensitive part of the year, where the weather is hot, the sun is slowly starting to set earlier, and the baseball schedule is winding down. Wins and losses matter here, and what’s done now will set you up for the September grind. In September, there are 2 categories; 1. Meaningful Baseball, or 2. Spoiler baseball.
The Blue Jays currently sit 4th in the American League East, 10.5 games back of the 1st place Tampa Bay Rays. Toronto also sits 5th overall in the Wild Card standings, 4.5 games out of the 2nd wild card spot, with the Seattle Mariners and Boston Red Sox ahead; New York and Oakland currently occupy 1st and 2nd place spots.
September baseball is creeping upon us; where do the Blue Jays stand regarding playoff contention? Can they make up drastic ground in the standings?
More from Toronto Blue Jays News
- Blue Jays: Alek Manoah on pace to succeed in possible postseason
- Blue Jays: Bradley Zimmer has carved himself a valuable role
- Anthony Bass has been the shutdown reliever the Blue Jays needed
- Blue Jays: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. open to a long-term contract
- Blue Jays: Snapping cold streaks at the right time
So, very reachable, right? A Wild Card spot can be possible with all the right things happening in and around the field. First thing’s first; losing is not one of those right things and the Blue Jays have dropped 6 of their last 9 games; not a good look, heading into September. They’ve plated 41 runs total in 9 games, compared to the 47 against. Dropping the Seattle series was a blow to any plans of gaining ground in the standings; two losses to Washington should not happen, and Detroit should be a stroll in the park.
The Blue Jays bullpen needs help.
The closer, Jordan Romano, needs to be utilized more often to prevent games from going to save situations, as every win matters at this point. Offensively, the Jays need to score runs; get them on and get them across. It doesn’t help to not have an active George Springer.
It is said that the birds are not a small-ball club; well, aside from your heavy hitters, if you’re not generating havoc on the base paths, teams will cruise through nine in a groove that struggling bats can’t break. When arms like Robby Ray are dealing 6+ innings, you’re expected to push guys across the dish. Finding ways to capitalize on scoring ducks is very crucial, as postseason baseball is ALL of that.
The upcoming schedule includes 10 games against Wild Card teams, 13 games against relevant AL East postseason teams, and a total of 39 remaining games.
Pro’s: you have the opportunity to gain ground against direct playoff contenders. 39 games with only 4.5 back of a wild card spot are more than enough. There also is a chance for those teams to take a slide in the rest of their schedule.
Overall, the Blue Jays must control their side of the fate on-field to open a possible door to October baseball.