In sports, we have athletes who are made to play for many years. Just because you have longevity doesn't mean you were tremendous or productive every season. There are All-Stars, and there are role players. We have players who can have five to 10 years of success in their sports, and then you have one season of wonders. In this case, Pat Borders is a one-season phenomenon in Blue Jays' history.
Borders played catcher for the Blue Jays. 1990 was the best season Borders had in his career. He hit a career-high 15 home runs with an OPS+ of 120. He batted .286, and we can't forget that he caught Dave Stieb's no-hitter on Sept. 2, 1990, against the Cleveland Indians. It's the first and only no-hitter in Blue Jays' history.
1990 is his best year from a statistical standpoint. As part of the Jays' team collectively, he earned more success a few short years later. Blue Jays fans and the organization will never forget his performance in the 1992 World Series. The 1992 World Series marked the first championship in their franchise history. Blue Jays remain the only Canadian team to win the World Series, and the 1992 series was the first team where games were played outside of the United States. Pat Borders is one of the biggest reasons the Jays won that series. He batted .450 in the series against the Atlanta Braves. The Braves were loaded. The Braves had a great rotation. We're talking about Steve Avery, John Smoltz, and Tom Glavine. Greg Maddux joined the Braves the following season. The braves had all the pieces to win the series, but Borders and the Jays had other thoughts.
Borders was fabulous in the series, surrounded by talented players who helped him carry the load: Dave Winfield, Ed Sprague, Roberto Alomar, Devon White, and John Olerud. The list goes on and on. Aside from his performance in the World Series, he hit 13 homers that season (second most of his career) with 53 RBIs collecting 116 hits with a batting average of .242.
In 1993, the Blue Jays repeated as champions after that dramatic game-winning three-run homer by Joe Carter.
Borders played in the majors for 17 seasons. During his seven-year tenure with the Blue Jays, he played a full season of games three times, including the 1990, 1992 and 1993 seasons. While his production in 1992 came close to his 1990 numbers, the performance he had in 1990 will forever go down as his best season in the majors.
Borders is a player that only a few people will know about, especially in the current generation. Still, it's okay because the city of Toronto will ensure they won't forget about him. His contributions and commitment to the franchise will forever be indebted in the eyes of the fans and organization.