Ok, so I’ll admit while I was the guy all through April saying “calm down, it’s early”, I wasn’t the guy saying that through May….or even 8 games ago….or even 5 games ago! This was a total disaster of a season for the Jays. All these moves that every Jays fan loudly applauded from Alex Anthopoulos, and yet it was worse than last season was. In fact, it was looking worse than most seasons have since 93 and that is saying something. What a difference 8 in a row makes.
Not chump teams they’re beating up on either. Sure the Rangers have been ice cold, but they’re still the Rangers. Sweeping the best team in the AL over the last 3 seasons in their park is impressive. Sweeping the Rockies at home wasn’t a walk in the park either, especially in the first game. Josh Johnson pitches his best game of the year, yet the Rocks were still primed to steal it in the top of 8th. The Jays got a big play from Adam Lind defensively, and really they were awesome defensively all game to keep it scoreless.
So I guess what I’m trying to say is they haven’t exactly just been beating up on the Marlins and Astros for 8 games. And even bigger than 8 in a row, they’re now 22-12 since May 11th as Shi Davidi of Sportsnet tweeted out Wednesday night (of course, if you take away the last 8….).
But now comes the real test. A weekend set against the wildcard leading Baltimore Orioles. This is where the Jays have struggled this season….the division. While they’ve closed the gap on a lot of teams during this run, I believe mentally this series is so huge. And there is no reason they shouldn’t win with the way things are coming together.
The bullpen has NEVER been in question this season, just an awesome performance thus far. The bats have been pretty consistent since the start of May, the defense hasn’t been humiliating of late unlike earlier in the year, and finally the big name pitchers that were brought in are FINALLY starting to look like themselves.
Although of late its been the 2 newest additions to the rotation who have been stealing the headlines. Esmil Rogers has only given up 4 earned runs in 4 starts and 3 nights ago against the Rockies he took a no-no into the 6th. And if that weren’t enough of a pleasant surprise, Chien-Ming Wang is pitching like its 2006. Just 2 starts so far so its still far too early to get pumped about an amazing comeback story here, but he has gone 7 innings in both his starts.
He will throw on Saturday with the book ends to this series being Dickey tonight and Johnson in the finale. They don’t need to sweep the O’s, I think that’s asking too much. But 2 of 3 would be huge. Then they get the Rays and Red Sox. This is a make or break time for this ball team. A month ago I thought getting back to .500 before the all-star break. A 6-4 or 7-3 run in their next 10 would not only have them comfortably over .500, but very much so in the wildcard hunt. Add to that, Reyes, Lawrie, Morrow and Happ all are still on the DL so they will be adding big pieces in the next few weeks.
Still a long way to go, but this team is starting to get their fans jacked up about things again, just hope this time they can see it through because Jays fans can take much more of this beating!
Follow me on twitter where I will talk much more baseball once the NBA and NHL finals and drafts and free agency periods are done with @TJ_Soups