3) Pick your places for analytics
Apologies in advance for taking Blue Jays fans back to a painful memory. However, the main reason for this particular New Year resolution is what happened during Game 2 of the Wild Card series versus the Twins.
José Berríos had started well in Minnesota, as the Blue Jays looked to tie up their three-game series. Through three innings he was firing on all cylinders, striking out five and allowing just three hits.
Then, after allowing a lead-off walk in the bottom of the fourth, the inexplicable decision was made to take Berríos out of the game. As much as the subsequent loss was on the offence rather than the pitching, the decision understandably frustrated and annoyed Blue Jays players and fans alike.
The main reason for this was down to the timing of the decision to remove Berríos. Eventually, manager John Schneider took the blame, but there are many who question if he really was the one pulling the strings.
Of more importance, this one decision to take out Berríos highlighted the Blue Jays' (over) reliance on analytics. There was simply no other explanation for removing a starting pitcher who was throwing extremely well.
If ever there was a case for trusting your own eyes rather than going with analytics, this was it. There really was no justified reason for what Schneider, Ross Atkins or whoever ultimately decided to do.
This is not to say there isn't a place for analytics in the world of baseball, with statistics long being a significant part of the game. However, baseball and professional sports in general, are also about instinct and trusting your gut feeling.
Ultimately, there is a time and place for everything, but it's about finding that right balance between going with the information and just judging the moment as a singular event. If nothing else, fans will hope the outcome in Minnesota serves as a useful lesson for the Blue Jays moving forward.