Posted tagged ‘boston’

Hate to admit it, but I’ve made peace with the 2017 Blue Jays

July 13, 2017

The consensus was unanimous: The four remaining series before the all-star break would give a strong indication of whether the Blue Jays would be buyers or sellers at the non-waiver trade deadline.

Baltimore came in and the Jays made Kevin Gausman and Ubaldo Jimenez look like Cy Young and Walter Johnson.

The Red Sox were next and they steamrolled their way to a three-game sweep.

So the Jays flew to New York and took two out of three from the Yankees. A pleasant surprise to say the least.

Finally, it was time to face Houston. While splitting a four-game series against the best team in MLB is certainly a positive, it was the weirdest split I have ever seen. Two wins that featured strong pitching and clutch swings. Two losses where they were completely out-classed and out-matched by the Astros.

So what does it all mean?

The pessimists feel the window of opportunity has closed and it’s time to “blow it up.” The optimists feel they still have a fighting chance. They will also point to the trade deadline of 2015, when the team was hovering around the .500 mark before AA acquired Tulo and David Price.

I find myself in the middle of these conflicting opinions; and while I choose not to fully commit to one side, I have reached a more comforting consensus:

I have made peace with the 2017 Blue Jays.

Making peace means that I accept the high probability that they won’t make the playoffs. It also means that I accept that there will likely be some form of re-tooling or rebuilding and key pieces from the 2015 and 2016 playoff runs could be traded.

Making peace is my way of softening the blow. It allows me to be disappointed, but not overly upset. If the Jays flounder their way to the end of the regular season, I will still be able to enjoy the matches.

I guess one could call it self-preservation. It is definitely not the right way of handling things; nor is it the wrong way. It’s just my way.

Of course, I hope I’m wrong and the Jays go an incredible run in the second half. But if that doesn’t happen – and a strong argument could be made that things will not get better – then I’m ready for it without any anger or frustration.

Just remember: Nothing is truly guaranteed.

ER

Hey! Why is everyone getting worked up about Joey Bats, contract negotiations, money and 2017????

February 25, 2016

Is it just me or is anyone else bothered with how some fans and media are focusing so much on what could/might happen next season when the current one hasn’t even started yet? Why stress out about the 2017 roster when the 2016 version is right in front of us and provides the opportunity to savour a lineup that includes Jose Bautista?

The Blue Jays should seriously consider hosting “Eckhart Tolle Day” at the Skydome this year. Maybe the team can even invite Tolle to throw out the first pitch to Josh Thole.

Much has been said about Joey Bats’ stance on negotiations, hometown discounts and alleged financial demands. And of course, this storyline is full of speculation and conclusion jumping. It reminds me of Chris Bosh’s final season with the Raptors.

Any smart Raptor fan knew if the team was heading in the wrong direction – and they were – the hard-working Bosh would sign elsewhere when his contract expired. At first, I wasn’t warm to the notion, but eventually made peace with it. So when CB4 chose the Miami Heat, I had nothing but admiration and respect for him. The same goes for Joey Bats.

I am eternally grateful for everything Bautista has done for the Blue Jays. Witnessing his rise from no-name utility player to All-Star slugger is something I will always cherish. If he and the Jays can work something out, that would be wonderful! If things don’t work out and he chooses to play for another team, that’s fine too. I’m okay with it.

Granted, I would prefer it if he didn’t sign with Boston or the Yankees. Personally, I’d rather see him play for a team in California or the Miami Marlins. However, if he chooses the Red Sox or Yanks, so be it.

It’s important to remember that Bautista – along with AA – is the epicentre of this current chapter in Blue Jays history. He was the shinning star when things were bleak and has excelled on the field. He also helped guide this team back to the promised land, culminating in a championship banner and hopefully, a couple more. Bautista has earned the right to choose how his contract is negotiated and its financial worth. Fans should/must respect that right, even if that means an unfavourable outcome.

But all of that is not important right now!!!

The 2016 season should be the sole focus. Worrying about what will happen after the 2016 season is pointless. So let’s give our attention to what’s in front of us and enjoy it. Let’s deal with the future when it’s appropriate; say, November.

Never has the expression “cross the bridge when we get there” been more prevalent for Blue Jay fans than now.

ER

A short observation about the AL East

July 2, 2015

I look at the current AL East standings and chuckle.

Not too long ago – say 5-10 years ago – there were those who argued that it was impossible to successfully compete in a division that included the Red Sox and Yankees.

Safe to say that theory has been disproven.

ER

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Retro Blue Jays – Inspired by Terry Gilliam

June 23, 2014

Posted by Retrontario’s YouTube page.

1987 was an infamous year for the Blue Jays.

I’m sure you know what happened. Therefore, there’s no need to bring it up. However, if you really want to rip that band-aid off, I will provide you with this recap.

There were some good moments too: George Bell was named American League MVP and the Jays hit 10 home runs in a game against Baltimore.

The ’87 season also provided a unique animated advertisement that’s displayed above. It promotes the first home series of the season; but what makes it noteworthy is the presentation.

The ad shows a blue flash (which later turns out be an actual blue jay) wreaking havoc on a group of nouns that represent the Jays’ division rivals at the time: Orioles, Yankees, Red Sox, Brewers, Indians and Tigers. The cartoon images – by today’s standards – are sub par, but would’ve likely garnered a few entertained laughs. The animation also pays a small homage to Terry Gilliam, which is illustrated through the character representing the Yankees.

The so-called nouns are stereotypical, which isn’t bad until you come to the character representing the Cleveland Indians. Even by 1987 standards, it’s borderline racist.

Though a quick Google search yields nothing, I would be very surprised if the CRTC or CBSC didn’t receive at least one complaint about it. These days, an advertisement such as the one above would never have seen the light of the day. Even if it was made, there’s no way Rogers would release it.

Re. John Farrell

October 23, 2012

I’m glad it’s over.

When I first heard the Red Sox were interested in John Farrell, I doubted it. But as this rumour was becoming a reality, I eventually made peace with it.

The idea of Farrell leaving the Blue Jays never upset me. What made me want to pull my hair out was how this story turned into a giant monster. The smallest hint or the latest report caused a disturbing frenzy online. Those who didn’t like Farrell were jumping for joy. Others were salivating at what kind of compensation would be sent to Toronto. This is what happens when a team performs below expectations; a mountain from a mole hill.

Some time over the last year, John Farrell decided managing the Boston Red Sox was a better opportunity than managing the Blue Jays. I cannot fault him for that. This is – for lack of a better term – his dream job. We’ve all wanted to be in that position and I bet no one would pass on such a chance.

AA and the Jays had no choice. They had to let him go. Why keep someone who doesn’t want to be part of the organization? It’s counterproductive. Even if the Jays won 90 or more games, Farrell would still go to Boston. Heck, even if Farrell was managing a different team – say, the San Diego Padres for example – he would still go to Boston. Once Bobby Valentine was fired and the opportunity presented itself, the so-called writing was on the wall.

There are two important items to stress.

First, the Blue Jays didn’t give up Farrell to the Red Sox. They didn’t let Boston “steal” or “woo” him away. John Farrell chose to return to Boston. Sure, AA could’ve presented Farrell with a contract extension. But I doubt that would’ve made a difference.

Second, choosing to manage the Red Sox is not a slight on the Blue Jays or the city of Toronto. Some decisions might’ve backfired here and there, but there’s no way Farrell just went through the motions while wearing a Jays uniform. He wanted the Jays to win, regardless of any disagreements he may have had with AA. Think about it: Would the Red Sox really want someone who “mailed-it-in” or didn’t care about what happens on the field? It’s not worth shedding tears and Blue Jay fans shouldn’t take it personally.

SN590’s Jeff Sammut asked listeners if they would boo Farrell when he returns to Toronto. I gave it some thought and although I’m not mad at John Farrell, I’d still boo him. For starters, he’s the opposing manager and it is the notorious Boston Red Sox.

I don’t blame John Farrell for making this choice. I understand and respect it.

Still, “getting dumped” stinks.

– The Hek


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