Thursday, April 30, 2009

If parity is what you want...

A thought occurred to us as we were listening to last night's beatdown at the hands of the Royals. One of the old saws that gets yanked out every season by barstool pontifcators and JaysTalk callers is that there are some mediocre teams that the Jays can't afford to lose to if they are going to remain competitive.

At various times, the Tigers, Rays, Orioles, Mariners and, notably, the Royals fell into this category of weaker sisters that some assumed should be easy pickings, and when the Jays lost to these lesser teams, people totally lost it.

Setting aside whether if this theory was sound (and it probably wasn't), a glance through the American League in 2009 shows us that there really aren't any allegedly easy wins for the Jays or any other team this year.

All of the teams in the Central look to be at least .500 teams, and the West - with the offensive juggernaut Rangers and the surprising Mariners - looks as though it could be a four team race well into the summer. Almost every team has relative stregnths and weaknesses, and no team stands out as exceptionally weak or an outright disaster along the lines of the Nationals.

Speaking of which: Let's not tally those interleague games against Washington in the win column for the Jays just yet.

The upside of this parity is that we'll likely two-thirds of the AL in the mix for playoff spots all season long, and every game is going to be that much more important if the Wild Card will be up for grabs to a team with a win total in the low 90's.

Bring on the nail-biters.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

http://www.salon.com/sports/col/kaufman/2008/04/02/wednesday/index.html

Much as I love the Jays, this is a pretty good argument (from last spring) debunking the whole unbalanced-schedule thing.

Tao of Stieb said...

That doesn't seem like much of an argument to us. In fact, it reads like a JaysTalk call.

King Kaufman is a douche anyways.

Anonymous said...

The Jays are not a wicked pissa team, they are very poorly constructed. Ricciardi didn't even sign one free agent! Not one. This team ain't contending anytime soon, if not for last place! I'm happy such a weak team is in the AL Easy(sic). Good luck with Burres, the Red Sox and everybody else schools him for that matter. Today will be a laugher today!Boston will win another World Series while the Jays fans bring up slop like Burres.Even shitty little Tampa has become better than y'all.

eyebleaf said...

^^ Red Sox Nation in the house, and insufferable as always.

Fucking annoying pricks.

Tao of Stieb said...

There are two free agents signed in the offseason (Millar and Barrett) who are on the roster.

Blah blah blah blah pissa blah blah.

Darren Priest said...

He's got "wicked pissa" and "y'all" in the same post...not to mention the comical redundancy and failing to acknowledge "shitty little Tampa Bay" beat them, too.

No wonder he chooses anonymity. Lay off the Mountain Dew Code Red, Corky, and go bother the Sons of Sam Horn.

Anonymous said...

Tao of Sleaze, Barret and Millar were signed to minor league contracts NOT major league ones. That's what I meant. Anyway, someone mentioned y'all. I'm Black so we use y'all. I'm also from Somerville ,Mass so I use wicked pissa too. Anyway, the Jays are temporarily in first but with slop like Burres you can race to the bottom of the barrel. I'll give you credit at least you won't be the joke that Yankees Suck! will be. They have old farts, a bad farm and buy all their players. At least your owners(who are richer than ours by the way) didn't let JP make one major league signing.


About Tampa, they lucked out. They were better than the Jays last year but anyone was cept for Baltimore.Now Tampa reverted back to normal , but we'll crush them now. Tek is hitting and we have tons of starting pitching depth.The Jays in 09? 5th place losers!

Tao of Stieb said...

Millar and Barrett were signed to minor league FREE AGENT contracts because that's the way the market went this off season. In which case, we'd have to say that J.P. was a fox with his signings.

Consider: Millar the minor league free agent (.914 OPS and 7 RsBI) versus Rocco Baldelli the major league free agent (.516 OPS and 1 RBI).

(With apologies to Drew/Lloyd.)

And don't even start with that Varitek nonsense around here, sunshine.

Bruno Von Rottweiler said...

Darren, what's up? anyway with Boston man, yeah your team is better and is the best team around BUT who schooled you last year? The Shitty little Rays, no? Yes, JP and the Rogers cheaped out this season and its a drag BUT the season is not over yet. Let's see if Lester holds up (he's been hit the last few times out),if Beckett is healthy and Dice-K etc . So stop this pro Boston crap, OK?

Voodoo Matt said...

Hold him down Tao, I'll beat on him.

No ... all teams in this division have some issues. Toronto has a fantastic rotation on the DL. New York's bullpen other than Rivera is slightly less effective than a tee. Boston has two senior citizens who should get plastic knees installed soon. Tampa is falling to the norm. Baltimore is Baltimore.

KingofCabbagetown said...

Fuck off Anon.
TOS...just ignore that BS

On the topic of "games they should win". I kind of buy into the theory but not based solely on which teams they are playing, but rather the SP + the team they are playing. You only need to look at vegas odds (which I do far too often) to see that the line varies drastically depending on who is toeing the mound (my mind just drifted). So losing a game to Crazacky Greinke does not make me want to punch a wall...but when we drop games to a a picther like...well a Brian Burres type, which we seemed to do all the time last year, that is what made me want to go all "the most dangerous game" on Denbo last year...end of disjointed rant.

Christopher said...

You know the Jays are being looked at as a serious contender when the Sox trolls start coming out. There is one over at DJF as well.

Bruno Von Rottweiller said...

Christopher, no offense but the Jays willnot be contending. Let's get serious. when you throw out garbage like Burres and the wildly incosistent ,Purcey this is a contender? No way. JP should have gotten Parrish back , start miller OR even Castro in AA. Fine protect Mills and Cecil but Burres? This is bad Gming. He claims he wants to see hwat they have with the kids THEN puts out the Orioles' garbage like Burres! Alright Tallet, fine, but why throw out a pitcher that is so bad.

Another thing, Cito's lineup today was terrible. I don't understand some of his moves, they seemed to win back in 92-93 in spite of him!The Pinchitting deal too is quite stupid. what is with Cito, he got the team to hit again so why the GIDPs again? And why except Burres over Bullington or even someone else? I question Gaston's greatness...he was a great hitting coach BUT manager? That is questionable.