Six biggest X-Factors for the 2023 Toronto Blue Jays

Toronto Blue Jays v Los Angeles Angels
Toronto Blue Jays v Los Angeles Angels / John McCoy/GettyImages
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The city of Toronto, Canada, and all Blue Jays followers worldwide expect a minimum of the American League East Championship banner flowing through the wind from the top of the Rogers Center roof; is this too much to ask for? Not at all. It is 110% attainable from the product the Blue Jays have spread across the diamond this year.

This year’s Blue Jays' 40-man roster is aesthetic on the charts and will be productive throughout the season once convergent. In this skillful roster lies “x-factors” that are crucial to the advancement of this team. In this case, x-factor players are defined by their successes directly contributing to the success of the team, and their lack of top performance forthwith diminishing team success. Further to this, Blue Jays' x-factors will not only be involved in the influence of a postseason chase but also postseason success. Looking at the current roster, who are these players?

Key Blue Jays will stand as “x-factors” throughout the battle of the 2023 season

Toronto has a cohesive two-way club as management focused on polishing each end of the sword to match their competition in the American League. Arms were added along with speed, athleticism, bats, and defense.

Let’s start with the pitching. The Blue Jays' young guns will be guided by a sprinkle of veteran presence in the dugout this season. X-factor number one is veteran right-handed pitcher Kevin Gausman. The Blue Jays have a contending starting rotation and Gausman leads the pack with experience and a filthy repertoire.

Gausman’s 2022 season had a better taste than what meets the eye. Despite recording 10 losses seasoned by back luck, he won 12 games and finished with a 3.35 ERA, striking out 205 batters and only walking 28. Gausman’s repertoire is established with a well-commanded fastball and filthy splitter. Not only can he work a count but he can conceal his weapons for as long as possible while controlling the running game. This season, he should mirror 12 wins if not sitting between 13-15. His presence and contributions throughout and leading up to fall baseball will be crucial. Gausman will likely be the Blue Jays' big game pitcher come playoff time; he sets the mood, comes composed, and delivers in stressful situations.