Patience is Key with Baseball
Here's the thing. I have not posted about the Jays in quite some time. Why? Well; it's really simple actually. I've written a fair amount; 6 blogs to be exact but I couldn't hit the publish button each time I went to finish them.
Why not? Again; basic reasoning. I need to see more. I can't go on a rant about how bad this team is or how bad Rogers is or how stupid Kevin Pillar is (I'll touch on this in a second); without seeing a larger sample size. 2 months seems to be about the key every year for me just because it allows teams to get in a grove. For this team; it means actually having everyone in the lineup healthy. You can count on 2 hands how many days this year the entire team has been healthy.
So let's get to this. A few people have asked me my view on the Kevin Pillar slur and suspension. Did he get enough? Why would he say that? He's such a nice guy.....Just stop. Especially that last part. Do you even know Kevin Pillar? Do you actually know what he's like away from the commercials or charity events? I'm putting it out there; you don't. Look; I'm not hear to say he's a nice guy or a bad guy. He said something he shouldn't have and got punished for it. He could have dropped a million more F words than that one and no one would have said a thing. It would have been pretty funny for him to call someone a ferret but he didn't so we stand here judging. Look; I haven't been in a locker room in about 15 years but I can tell you this; I doubt it has changed. The words that athletes use in there would make a sailor blush. Is it right? No. Here's the thing though; these guys are basically still the high school jocks that you remember...they're just getting paid millions of dollars now. There's a reason why no active athlete in a few professional sports have come out to the public. The guys in the room with them aren't ready for it; the scrutiny that they'd play under and the abuse they'd hear from the fans would be intense. I think that this day in age; that's disgusting. We'll allow same sex marriages but these people who have every right to live and be happy can't because they've chosen a profession where they will be judged not only for their performance but their sexuality. It's a damn shame.
Enough of my rant; back to actual baseball games.
So if I told you at the start of the season that the Blue Jays lineup for most of the first two months would have no Josh Donaldson and no Tulo. What would you say? What if I told you Jose would be hitting like a pitcher for the first month as would Devon Travis? How many wins would you give this team? Then throw in no Happ, no Liriano and Sanchez would be sidelined a couple of times. Now how many more wins are you wagering on. What if a bookie from Vegas came up to you and said I'll give you great odds that the Jays will be 1 game below .500 on June first; what odds would you need to take that bet? 50-1; 100-1? You might not even take those.
Guess what though? In a lineup that featured Darwin Barney, Ryan Goins taking a lot of big at bats...this team actually stayed afloat. I'm going to give you another break down.
Player A - .265 11 HR 31 RBI 27 R .320 OBP .492 SLG .812 OPS
Player B - .234 10HR 22RBI 23R .349 OBP .418 SLG .848 OPS
Those numbers are pretty close right? What if I told you Player A was making roughly $9 freaking million dollars less than Player B. What if I told you people in Toronto wanted Player B signed no matter what? Player A is Kendrys Morales...and at $9 million less a year; guess who's production I'm taking no matter how good of a clubhouse guy Edwin was.
Now I'm throwing in Player C's stats. If I told you this guy was garbage and that no one really wanted him and that the team who locked him up had their fans up in arms because they didn't like the price tag of just a little north of $4 million a year for two years. Take a look.
Player C - .282 12 HR 34 RBI 29 R .347 OBP .540 SLG .888 OPS
Would you jump at the chance to sign this guy for $16 million less than Edwin? Yes. How could you not? If you didn't; you're fan base would think you're a moron. The Blue Jays actually did just that. They locked this guy up last summer: Justin Smoak. The same people who were hating the Jays are loving managements signing with this guy. Keep in mind; it's a two month sample size but it's still fantastic numbers with far better defense that what would have gotten with EE. I'll keep this guy on my team at that price; even if he falls off.
Here's the good news Jays fans. Everyone is starting to get healthy at the right time. This weekend the Yankees are in town and it has the feeling of the biggest series of the year so far. It's a chance to get same games back and cut the division lead big time. Problem is they lost last night. Overall though; they've done well to get to this point; they just need to put another solid month and they'll be right in the thick of it.
Yes; they are still far too old. They rely far too much on the long ball but so what? If it's what got them to the playoffs the previous two season; then it's got to be good enough this year because that's who we have on our team.
Keep enjoying this team; because at some point...things will change. Guys will be traded or move on and you're going to be missing the chance to say you watched them on tv or were lucky enough to see them live. Appreciate what you have, while you have because eventually it's gone and there is no getting it back. Like the title says; patience is the key.