So is this the kind of ballclub you can get behind or what?
Oh sure, there are still maddening stretches of inexplicably flat baseball these Blue Jays tend to fall into, but I'm willing to chalk that up to growing pains. For now. Because this is a talented roster that has nowhere to trend but up.
To these eyes, there is far more chance for even greater upside in this lineup than there is downside. And that's exciting. For the first time in a long time, these Jays have a roster stacked with talented youth who's best is yet to come (Lawrie, Arencibia, Rasmus, Thames? Sure, Thames), unquestioned superstars (Bautista, Escobar? Sure, Escobar)... and only a few question marks.
It's a roster perfectly built to growing together, and that is no coincidence. The goal of Alex Anthopoulos has always been to put together a team built for the long-term, with a stacked farm system ready to plug holes through promotion or for use in trades. That aspect is definitely in place.
So is the roster close? Now more than ever, I think that it is. Other than time and experience, perhaps the one thing the club really needed was a rallying cry......
Look friends, it would be easy & convenient to rant on about the American media not wanting to attribute the successes of a player (Bautista) on the league's only Canadian-based team to hard work and talent. But this isn't about jingoistic baseball rhetoric. It's about the league and those covering it taking notice of an upstart team getting ready to challenge the big dogs of the AL East.
It sure seems, since the story "broke" concerning The Man in White (this whole thing is stupid!), that the Toronto line-up has, in response, got their collective backs up and are responding to the negative attention with a massive F-U.... and that's a good thing.
You think our best player is PED'd up? F-U. You think we're stealing signs? F-U. You think we celebrate inappropriately? F-U. Jerkball, baby. Jerkball.
Much like the Rays, the Jays are now on the scene. It's only a matter of time before the barking gets even louder, and once again.... that's a good thing.