It’s the last day of May, and the Toronto Blue Jays currently sit at seven games above .500. This is due in large part to a recent surge in the offence, a surge that has included clutch hits and breakouts from some of the team’s slumping hitters. Even more impressive, this sudden offense came against one of the American Leagues’ better clubs, the Los Angeles Angels. Despite the Angels’ best efforts, they were just simply outplayed. Numerous clutch hits and come-from-behind wins carried the Jays this past weekend.
The Angels have the talent of a post-season calibre team. A solid rotation, an All-Star closer, and a star-studded lineup could be an indication of big things to come for them. This is a similar summary of the next two teams the Jays are set to face this upcoming week.
A duo of skilled, AL Central teams roll up to the Rogers Centre this week, as the Jays will face the Chicago White Sox beginning tonight, and the Minnesota Twins on the weekend. A look at the current MLB Standings will reveal that these two clubs rank first and second in their division, Minnesota being the current leader. The Blue Jays have done well to already dispatch one potential playoff team to the tune of a four-game sweep, but how do they match up against their next opponents?
The Blue Jays are set to face off against two tough opponents this week. Both of these series could offer an early postseason preview.
The White Sox come into Toronto playing rather disappointing baseball. A favourite to win their division, they currently sit at a .500 record and have had to deal with some poor performances and injuries. The Blue Jays will see two of their best starters in Lucas Giolito and Michael Kopech but will contend with a depleted lineup that is currently without star shortstop, Tim Anderson, who is on the IL. The White Sox will also be without Kendall Graveman, who is on the restricted list.
The Blue Jays have the fortune of both Kevin Gausman and Alek Manoah slated to take the mound this series, as well as a hot-handed Hyun Jin Ryu. Looking at the dependable starting pitchers and young stars of the game, the White Sox and Blue Jays are comparable. This series will be a fun one to watch, and possibly a preview of a postseason series to come.
The Twins, on the other hand, currently lead the AL Central. Minnesota is one of the more well-rounded teams you’ll find in the division. They have the ability to pitch, hit, and defend, with their only potential question mark being the bullpen. With a team OPS+ of 117 and a team ERA of just 3.46, this is a team that is prepared to battle in every capacity. They match up well against the Blue Jays, whose strengths consisting of starting pitching and offence should bode well this weekend.
With Minnesota leading the Central, this series also offers another potential postseason preview. This week is set to be an important one for the Blue Jays and is sure to promote a playoff atmosphere at the Rogers Centre.