The 2013 Toronto Blue Jays – What Went Right

2013 Toronto Blue Jays

Blue Jays fans far and wide can agree on one thing, the 2013 baseball season has been a disappointment.

Yes, this team has surpassed the 73 win season from 2012… but we were all expecting more than 74 wins this year.

Over the next few days and weeks you’re going to see a lot of articles and posts and opinion pieces talking about what went wrong for the 2013 Toronto Blue Jays…

However, for all of the downs that fans have experienced this year, there have been some things that went right that I think we all need to take a look at and try to remember as we move into the off-season and the 2014 season.

In no particular order, here are 10 bright spots from the 2013 Blue Jays season.

Edwin Encarnacion 2013 Blue Jays

Edwin Proves He’s Legit

When this season started we all expected that Jose Bautista would be the #1 threat for home runs and runs driven in for the Toronto Blue Jays. We also expected that Edwin Encarnacion would do his best to keep pace with the great numbers that he put up in 2012.

Edwin finishes the 2013 season with a .272 batting average, a .904 OPS, 29 doubles, 36 home runs and 104 RBI. With all of the trouble that this team had in 2013, those are admirable results and I am satisfied with them.

Well done Eddie.

Brett Lawrie 2013 Blue Jays

Brett Got His Groove Back

It took a while. He was probably rushed back from his preseason injury. But when Brett finally got comfortable in the batters box and calmed down just a little bit at the plate, things clicked.

Brett Lawrie’s defense also needs to be recognized. He continuously makes the easy plays and the difficult plays at 3rd base. His reaction time allows him to stab at hard shots down the line and his speed gets him to bunts and dribblers in front of him.

If he stays healthy and plays the entire 2014 season the way he played in August and September we may get the Brett Lawrie that we all hope we were getting in the trade with Milwaukee on December 6, 2010.

Munenori Kawasaki 2013 Blue Jays

The Munenori Kawasaki Love Affair

This is a storyline that was never supposed to happen. Munenori Kawasaki was never supposed to be a major part of the Toronto Blue Jays season. But when Jose Reyes went down with injury and he arrived from Buffalo… well, things got crazy.

Kawasaki captured the hearts and imaginations of fans all over the country with his enthusiasm, smile and effort. I need to be clear in expressing my belief that he is not an everyday MLB player. But he is a hell of a teammate and if he can continue to improve at 2nd base (and maybe learn to play 3rd) Muni could be a serviceable bench player for a few more years.

Note: I was at the May 26th game when Kawasaki hit his walk-off double and it was amazing. Never have I seen a baseball player happier in a regular season game. The crowd went wild. I was also in the park when he hit his 1st career home run against Baltimore on June 21st. I got goosebumps and cheered as loud as I ever have before.

Kevin Pillar, Anthony Gose, Moises Sierra 2013 Blue Jays

The Kids Were Alright

Many fans wanted to see Anthony Gose in a Toronto Blue Jays uniform at some point in the 2013 season. But you’d be hard pressed to find fans who wanted to see Kevin Pillar, Moises Sierra and Ryan Goins join him.

While it wasn’t in the plans to see these prospects in the big leagues, they were here anyway. And it wasn’t all bad. Pillar and Sierra showed some flashes of major league ability and I can see 1 or both as 4th outfielders on good teams in the future. Ryan Goins proved that he can flash some leather at 2nd base, and with more time and at bats he could hit enough to be an MLB regular in the future.

As for Gose, there is no denying his ability to chase the ball down in CF. His speed is a gift. But like Goins he still needs to hit more and get on base far more often to be a legitimate contributor for the Blue Jays.

None of these had a Yasiel Puig impact on the club, but they were alright given the circumstances.

JA Happ 2013 Blue Jays

JA Happ Returns

On May 7th in Tampa Bay fans of the Blue Jays and all of baseball held their breath when they saw Happ get hit in the head by a line drive off the bat of Desmond Jennings. It was scary and graphic and awful. I hope to never see anything like it again.

But exactly 3 months later on August 7th in Seattle, Happ was back on the mound and showing the world what desire and perseverance and love of the game looks like.

Happ’s season stats aren’t outstanding. We will never look back at 2013 as the year he stood out from the crowd. But we will look back and say that he proved just how tough he is.

Steve Delabar and Brett Cecil 2013 Blue Jays

Brett Cecil, Steve Delabar, Casey Janssen & The Bullpen

The Blue Jays bullpen was vastly overused in 2013 because of the trouble the starters had with consistency and quality. But in the middle of fatigue and a ton of innings there was brilliance.

Seeing Brett Cecil and Steve Delabar on the field for the 2013 All-Star game at Citi Field was awesome. It was a moment of pride for Blue Jays fans and a great feather in the cap for both pitchers. Here’s hoping that we see even more of that in the future – but without the crazy amount of work needed so that they can both be healthy for the entire season in 2014.

Casey Janssen also continued to prove that he can be the closer (for as long as he’s affordable) on this team. His 34 saves in 36 opportunities were much needed and appreciated by the team and fans. Plus I love it when he comes into the game and DOA by the Foo Fighters blares over the Rogers Centre speakers.

Brett Lawrie and Jose Reyes 2013 Blue Jays

The Left Side of the Infield

For the last 6-8 weeks the Toronto Blue Jays have seen what they hoped they would see for the entire season on the left side of the infield. A healthy Brett Lawrie and Jose Reyes have gotten to ground balls and line drives that have saved hits and runs for the pitching staff. They have thrown out runners on bang bang plays at first. And they have given hope to the team for the future.

I will admit that at one point this season I was open to the thought of Brett moving to 2nd base. But his play beside Reyes late in the season has shown me that this is where he belongs in the big leagues and there is a bright future ahead.

Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus 2013 Blue Jays

Adam Lind & Colby Rasmus

Before the season started there was a lot of talk about the expectations for Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Reyes, Melky Cabrera, JP Arencibia and Brett Lawrie at the plate. But 2 players who went out this season and showed that they belong in the lineup were Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus.

And that was important for both players. Adam Lind has a $7 million option on his contract for 2014 with a $2 million buyout. Colby Rasmus is arbitration eligible with free agency coming in 2015.

I think that Adam Lind has to stay a Toronto Blue Jay. I don’t think that his $7 million breaks the bank in this payroll situation. And I think that his play at 1st base and left handed bat are needed on this team. Adam hit .287 with a .853 OPS, 26 home runs, 23 doubles and 67 RBI this season. I like those numbers for him and think that the RBI could be higher with a healthy top of the lineup next year.

A lot of people think that Colby may be disposable because of Anthony Gose. But as I mentioned earlier, I don’t think that Gose is ready to take over every day. He will not match Colby’s 26 home runs, 22 doubles or 66 RBI. Rasmus needs to be the starting CF for the Blue Jays in 2014 and maybe even longer. I would love to see a 3 to 5 year contract signed this off-season.

Rajai Davis June 8 2013 Walk Off Celebration Toronto Blue Jays

The 18 inning Win at Home on June 8th

On June 8th I was at the Rogers Centre with Sean to watch the Blue Jays vs the Texas Rangers. We had no idea when we showed up at the park that it would take 5 hours and 28 minutes, 18 innings and a whole lot of drama to find a winner.

I have been to a lot of baseball games in the last few years. But I have never been a part of something like that. We had 2 7th inning stretches. We were hungry and thirsty and sunburnt and emotionally drained from the ups and downs and almosts as the extra innings continued. When Jose Bautista threw out Lance Berkman at the plate in the 10th inning we thought maybe momentum was ours… but we still had to wait another 8 innings for Rajai Davis to drive in Emilio Bonifacio with a line drive in the 18th inning.

It was an awesome day at the ballpark and one I won’t soon forget.

2014 Toronto Blue Jays Season Tickets On Sale Now

There’s Always Next Year

It sucks to say it. No sports fan ever looks forward to uttering these words… but there’s always next year.

Some changes need to be made. Some of Alex Anthopoulos’ decisions may be unpopular and difficult. But 2014 should be better. I don’t know if Josh Johnson will be back. I don’t know if Brandon Morrow can stay healthy for a full season. I don’t know if Melky Cabrera will be able to run. I don’t know what the contract decisions will be on Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus. I don’t know who is going to play 2nd base.

I don’t know a lot of things.

But I do know that with less hype, (maybe) less pressure and better luck with health – this team can be better in 2014.

It’s my job as a fan to hope for that and cheer on the Toronto Blue Jays next year and every year after that.

Go Jays Go!

Be Awesome!

creator of content, manager of community, writer, tweeter, coffee drinker. sports, comics, movies, food, music & pop culture geek. Proud MoBro.

The 2013 Toronto Blue Jays – What Went Right

2013 Toronto Blue Jays

Blue Jays fans far and wide can agree on one thing, the 2013 baseball season has been a disappointment.

Yes, this team has surpassed the 73 win season from 2012… but we were all expecting more than 74 wins this year.

Over the next few days and weeks you’re going to see a lot of articles and posts and opinion pieces talking about what went wrong for the 2013 Toronto Blue Jays…

However, for all of the downs that fans have experienced this year, there have been some things that went right that I think we all need to take a look at and try to remember as we move into the off-season and the 2014 season.

In no particular order, here are 10 bright spots from the 2013 Blue Jays season.

Edwin Encarnacion 2013 Blue Jays

Edwin Proves He’s Legit

When this season started we all expected that Jose Bautista would be the #1 threat for home runs and runs driven in for the Toronto Blue Jays. We also expected that Edwin Encarnacion would do his best to keep pace with the great numbers that he put up in 2012.

Edwin finishes the 2013 season with a .272 batting average, a .904 OPS, 29 doubles, 36 home runs and 104 RBI. With all of the trouble that this team had in 2013, those are admirable results and I am satisfied with them.

Well done Eddie.

Brett Lawrie 2013 Blue Jays

Brett Got His Groove Back

It took a while. He was probably rushed back from his preseason injury. But when Brett finally got comfortable in the batters box and calmed down just a little bit at the plate, things clicked.

Brett Lawrie’s defense also needs to be recognized. He continuously makes the easy plays and the difficult plays at 3rd base. His reaction time allows him to stab at hard shots down the line and his speed gets him to bunts and dribblers in front of him.

If he stays healthy and plays the entire 2014 season the way he played in August and September we may get the Brett Lawrie that we all hope we were getting in the trade with Milwaukee on December 6, 2010.

Munenori Kawasaki 2013 Blue Jays

The Munenori Kawasaki Love Affair

This is a storyline that was never supposed to happen. Munenori Kawasaki was never supposed to be a major part of the Toronto Blue Jays season. But when Jose Reyes went down with injury and he arrived from Buffalo… well, things got crazy.

Kawasaki captured the hearts and imaginations of fans all over the country with his enthusiasm, smile and effort. I need to be clear in expressing my belief that he is not an everyday MLB player. But he is a hell of a teammate and if he can continue to improve at 2nd base (and maybe learn to play 3rd) Muni could be a serviceable bench player for a few more years.

Note: I was at the May 26th game when Kawasaki hit his walk-off double and it was amazing. Never have I seen a baseball player happier in a regular season game. The crowd went wild. I was also in the park when he hit his 1st career home run against Baltimore on June 21st. I got goosebumps and cheered as loud as I ever have before.

Kevin Pillar, Anthony Gose, Moises Sierra 2013 Blue Jays

The Kids Were Alright

Many fans wanted to see Anthony Gose in a Toronto Blue Jays uniform at some point in the 2013 season. But you’d be hard pressed to find fans who wanted to see Kevin Pillar, Moises Sierra and Ryan Goins join him.

While it wasn’t in the plans to see these prospects in the big leagues, they were here anyway. And it wasn’t all bad. Pillar and Sierra showed some flashes of major league ability and I can see 1 or both as 4th outfielders on good teams in the future. Ryan Goins proved that he can flash some leather at 2nd base, and with more time and at bats he could hit enough to be an MLB regular in the future.

As for Gose, there is no denying his ability to chase the ball down in CF. His speed is a gift. But like Goins he still needs to hit more and get on base far more often to be a legitimate contributor for the Blue Jays.

None of these had a Yasiel Puig impact on the club, but they were alright given the circumstances.

JA Happ 2013 Blue Jays

JA Happ Returns

On May 7th in Tampa Bay fans of the Blue Jays and all of baseball held their breath when they saw Happ get hit in the head by a line drive off the bat of Desmond Jennings. It was scary and graphic and awful. I hope to never see anything like it again.

But exactly 3 months later on August 7th in Seattle, Happ was back on the mound and showing the world what desire and perseverance and love of the game looks like.

Happ’s season stats aren’t outstanding. We will never look back at 2013 as the year he stood out from the crowd. But we will look back and say that he proved just how tough he is.

Steve Delabar and Brett Cecil 2013 Blue Jays

Brett Cecil, Steve Delabar, Casey Janssen & The Bullpen

The Blue Jays bullpen was vastly overused in 2013 because of the trouble the starters had with consistency and quality. But in the middle of fatigue and a ton of innings there was brilliance.

Seeing Brett Cecil and Steve Delabar on the field for the 2013 All-Star game at Citi Field was awesome. It was a moment of pride for Blue Jays fans and a great feather in the cap for both pitchers. Here’s hoping that we see even more of that in the future – but without the crazy amount of work needed so that they can both be healthy for the entire season in 2014.

Casey Janssen also continued to prove that he can be the closer (for as long as he’s affordable) on this team. His 34 saves in 36 opportunities were much needed and appreciated by the team and fans. Plus I love it when he comes into the game and DOA by the Foo Fighters blares over the Rogers Centre speakers.

Brett Lawrie and Jose Reyes 2013 Blue Jays

The Left Side of the Infield

For the last 6-8 weeks the Toronto Blue Jays have seen what they hoped they would see for the entire season on the left side of the infield. A healthy Brett Lawrie and Jose Reyes have gotten to ground balls and line drives that have saved hits and runs for the pitching staff. They have thrown out runners on bang bang plays at first. And they have given hope to the team for the future.

I will admit that at one point this season I was open to the thought of Brett moving to 2nd base. But his play beside Reyes late in the season has shown me that this is where he belongs in the big leagues and there is a bright future ahead.

Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus 2013 Blue Jays

Adam Lind & Colby Rasmus

Before the season started there was a lot of talk about the expectations for Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Reyes, Melky Cabrera, JP Arencibia and Brett Lawrie at the plate. But 2 players who went out this season and showed that they belong in the lineup were Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus.

And that was important for both players. Adam Lind has a $7 million option on his contract for 2014 with a $2 million buyout. Colby Rasmus is arbitration eligible with free agency coming in 2015.

I think that Adam Lind has to stay a Toronto Blue Jay. I don’t think that his $7 million breaks the bank in this payroll situation. And I think that his play at 1st base and left handed bat are needed on this team. Adam hit .287 with a .853 OPS, 26 home runs, 23 doubles and 67 RBI this season. I like those numbers for him and think that the RBI could be higher with a healthy top of the lineup next year.

A lot of people think that Colby may be disposable because of Anthony Gose. But as I mentioned earlier, I don’t think that Gose is ready to take over every day. He will not match Colby’s 26 home runs, 22 doubles or 66 RBI. Rasmus needs to be the starting CF for the Blue Jays in 2014 and maybe even longer. I would love to see a 3 to 5 year contract signed this off-season.

Rajai Davis June 8 2013 Walk Off Celebration Toronto Blue Jays

The 18 inning Win at Home on June 8th

On June 8th I was at the Rogers Centre with Sean to watch the Blue Jays vs the Texas Rangers. We had no idea when we showed up at the park that it would take 5 hours and 28 minutes, 18 innings and a whole lot of drama to find a winner.

I have been to a lot of baseball games in the last few years. But I have never been a part of something like that. We had 2 7th inning stretches. We were hungry and thirsty and sunburnt and emotionally drained from the ups and downs and almosts as the extra innings continued. When Jose Bautista threw out Lance Berkman at the plate in the 10th inning we thought maybe momentum was ours… but we still had to wait another 8 innings for Rajai Davis to drive in Emilio Bonifacio with a line drive in the 18th inning.

It was an awesome day at the ballpark and one I won’t soon forget.

2014 Toronto Blue Jays Season Tickets On Sale Now

There’s Always Next Year

It sucks to say it. No sports fan ever looks forward to uttering these words… but there’s always next year.

Some changes need to be made. Some of Alex Anthopoulos’ decisions may be unpopular and difficult. But 2014 should be better. I don’t know if Josh Johnson will be back. I don’t know if Brandon Morrow can stay healthy for a full season. I don’t know if Melky Cabrera will be able to run. I don’t know what the contract decisions will be on Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus. I don’t know who is going to play 2nd base.

I don’t know a lot of things.

But I do know that with less hype, (maybe) less pressure and better luck with health – this team can be better in 2014.

It’s my job as a fan to hope for that and cheer on the Toronto Blue Jays next year and every year after that.

Go Jays Go!

Be Awesome!

Scroll to top