Spring Training is almost in full effect. With everyone reported to camp and the first official Spring Training game to start Tuesday, it’s beginning to really feel like baseball is back.
The Toronto Blue Jays have had their shortest off-season in 2 decades due to their momentous playoff run that resulted in a heartbreaking 4-3 loss to the Kansas City Royals in game 6 of the ALCS. But, at this point, that loss is deemed as experience that a familiar Jays squad can fuel off for another hopeful playoff run this coming 2016 season.
The major league roster remains very similar, with the only major departs to be Ben Revere and of course David Price, who was added mid-season last year for a playoff push.
The real question is, can they make a playoff push again? With half of the nation being invested in the Blue Jays this up-coming season, there’s plenty of optimism for this year as well plenty of doubters. I think we can all agree on the weak point of the Jays being pitching.
So now that the major offseason deals are over with and the Jays didn’t make a splash in the pitching market, what will Toronto need to rely on for a winning campaign this 2016 season? The same thing they relied on last year to win the American League East: an abundance of runs.
Toronto led the majors in home runs, RBI and was tied for second overall in average last season. There’s no shock that the Jays will have to repeat that offensive production in 2016 to be hopeful playoff contenders come late September. But, there are always surprises throughout the long 162 game season, and management of the Blue Jays are hoping for some beneficial pitching surprises in 2016.
One thing is for sure, Jays need health and usual production from this slugger heavy offence, and a clutch year coming from their young bonafide ace, Marcus Stroman.
Written By: Matthew Mair