No long time Blue Jays fan needs to be convinced of the appeal the 2021 Toronto Blue Jays bring to the field every single night.
Even if you only hopped aboard in 2014 with the acquisitions of R.A. Dickey, Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and the rest, or in 2015 when they finally made it back to the postseason. However, there could be a whole new generation of Blue Jays fans ready to hop on board and enjoy the ride over the next few years as this core group of players hurls itself towards contending, perhaps ahead of schedule. So, if you’re on the fence and thinking about giving Canada’s team a shot, here’s a few reasons why you’d be crazy not to.
1. You get to witness a historical MVP race.
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While it’s true, Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels likely has the award wrapped up, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Marcus Semien will still receive a large number of runner-up votes. The Blue Jays have had MVP candidates before, George Bell won in 1987 and of course, Josh Donaldson won most recently in 2015. They’ve even had two players in contention before in 1992 Joe Carter finished 3rd and Dave Winfield finished 5th. In 1993 Paul Molitor finished 2nd while John Olerud finished 3rd. The significance of course is, that The Blue Jays won the World Series in both 1992 and 1993. A top-five finish for both Toronto sluggers will take a strong finish from each of them but is certainly attainable and could be extremely fun to watch.
2. The Division Rivalries Renewed
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Year after year the American League East division is one of, if not the, toughest division in baseball. Proving that point is that three teams, The Blue Jays, Yankees and Red Sox are among the five teams battling it out for two Wild Card spots. Add to that, The Tampa Bay Rays hold Aren’t completely in control of the top spot in the division. No other division in baseball has four teams battling it out for a playoff spot. The Blue Jays have seven games remaining against The New York Yankees and six against the Tampa Bay Rays. The baseball season, as a rule, can be a roller coaster ride, and when the games are twice as important tension runs high. The only thing that beats September baseball, is October baseball.
3. Witness Impending Big Moments
Did you miss out on the Jose Bautista bat flip? Were you watching live when Kawhi Leonard hit the buzzer-beater to eliminate the Sixers? This team has shown a flair for the dramatic all year long, and you just know there are massive moments coming that we will relive over and over for years to come. Unlike the teams of 2015 and 2016, this incarnation of The Blue Jays is founded on a strong young core. They’re just getting started. Maybe they’ll fall short of the playoffs this year, maybe they won’t, but this is the start of something special.
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4. Follow Alek Manoah’s dominant rookie campaign
It’s been twenty years since The Blue Jays had a rookie of the year; Eric Hinske in 2002, but Alek Manoah after ten big league starts is putting himself in the conversation. He’s shown no signs of slowing down and isn’t intimidated by the moment. He made his major league debut in Yankee Stadium, he thrived in his first outing in Toronto, and there’s no reason to believe that he won’t continue his path of destruction over his next ten starts. Manoah projects to be a huge part of the pitching staff over the next number of years, and we have the opportunity to watch him blossom into a star from the get-go in the midst of a memorable playoff race.
5. This team is just plain fun.
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Good luck finding a shot inside the dugout where there isn’t a smile on every face and at least a couple of boys in blue doing a little dance. Even in the midst of their first real playoff race, the young stars on The Jays haven’t lost themselves. They’re playing a game and they’re having fun, and they’re winning while they do it. They’re likeable, they’re relatable and they’re downright adorable. The atmosphere and the quality of the team on the field will likely make the club, which has struggled to attract big named free agents in the past, a hot spot for anyone looking to play with a contender.
So, if you’re looking for something to do for the next two months, there’s room on the bandwagon. I promise you, you won’t regret your decision. The Blue Jays have become the saviour, the bright spot, the saving grace for Toronto sports, and you won’t want to miss it.
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