Mixed feelings about an advantage for the Blue Jays

Oct 3, 2021; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays fans applaud their team off the field after a season ending victory over the Baltimore Orioles at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 3, 2021; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays fans applaud their team off the field after a season ending victory over the Baltimore Orioles at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports /
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Chances are the Blue Jays are going to at least begin the 2022 campaign with an advantage over their competition, at least when they’re playing at home.

Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi brought some light to a subject many of us have wondered about for a while, and that’s if or how vaccination status could play a role in the 2022 MLB season. The good news for the Blue Jays is that 100% of their 40-man roster is reportedly vaccinated, and it’s even been reported that vaccination status has played a role in their roster decisions over the winter. The bad news for their opponents is that if they’re not vaccinated, they won’t be able to play in Toronto, at least for now.

With the Canadian Federal border still having restrictions on unvaccinated individuals entering the country, it means that visiting teams will have to make some roster adjustments. Davidi mentioned that “MLB players who haven’t taken COVID-19 shots will be placed on restricted list when their teams are in Toronto”. Assuming the Blue Jays are indeed 100% vaccinated as a roster, that’s going to end up being a bit of an advantage from time to time.

I’m not going to speculate about which players may not be able to play in Toronto, or make any comments about anyone’s decisions. I have my thoughts, but this isn’t the space for that.

As it pertains to baseball, I’ve gotta admit that I have mixed feelings about this whole thing. On one hand, I don’t hate that the Blue Jays could get an occasional advantage over their opponents because of this whole situation. The rules are the rules, and it is what it is. On the other hand, I don’t wanna hear any excuses from any other teams or their fan bases.

I believe this season will be a significant step toward winning a championship for the Blue Jays, whether that’s in 2022 or sometime over the next few years. They’re truly in “win-now” mode, and I think we’re about to see that proven again before Opening Day, as the Jays look to be ready to make another significant roster addition on top of their already dangerous group. If and when they finish as one of the best teams in baseball in 2022, I don’t want to hear any “well yeah, they had an advantage at home all year” kinda nonsense.

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It remains to be seen just how big of a role this will play for opposing teams, or if the rules for crossing the Canadian border change at any point in 2022, but for now the Blue Jays might have a small leg up on the competition when they’re playing at home. As I said, it is what it is, I’d just prefer to see them best the competition with no excuses.