In 1947, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists began the Doomsday Clock, a symbol to represent the current state of the world and how close we are to a catastrophe. It takes into account climate change, technology, and nuclear risks tied to political tension. When the clock hits midnight, the world sees irreversible ramifications. We’re currently two minutes away, according to them.
While the baseball situation in Toronto isn’t nearly as frightening, the Blue Jays currently are inching towards midnight on their own Doomsday Clock. An aging-but-good 2015 team has wilted, resulting in a team that only gives you a good night’s rest when they don’t play the next day. The time left in this era of Blue Jays baseball is down to seconds. With icons like Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion gone, and Marco Estrada, JA Happ, and Josh Donaldson in their last years before free agency, the roster will be almost unrecognizable from that 2015 run. As a matter of fact, only five players – Aaron Loup, Marcus Stroman, Aaron Sanchez, JA Happ, and Kevin Pillar – are the only ones on the current 25-man roster that made one appearance for the team in the 2014 season. They’re about to go through a rebuild with completely new talent, new executives, and unfortunately, maybe a new manager and staff.
Ever play franchise mode with your favourite team on any sports game and then wonder “who the hell are these people?” five years into it before starting over with your heroes? Well, that’s where the Blue Jays are almost at, and it’s been just two years since they last made the playoffs. That isn’t a knock against Ross Atkins and the rest of Jays brass, who assembled a last-chance team designed to sit in American League purgatory until the trade deadline. The rebuild technically has already started, but not with the fire sale that we’re all expecting. They now sit 13.5 games back of the second wild card spot in mid-June and staring down the barrel end of just that.
The past few years were fun, but it’s time for new faces and a new era. From the slightly-okayish squad in 2014 to the whirlwind runs of 2015 and 2016 to the heartache that was 2017, we couldn’t have possibly expected the amount of ups and downs that we’ve seen, but it’s time to start fresh.
Thankfully, the Blue Jays have a kid waiting in the wings capable of beginning a new era of his own.