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“We just need to be better,” Bo Bichette takes on expanded leadership role heading into 2024 season

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Photo credit:Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports
Clarke Corsan
3 months ago
Bo Bichette is no longer just one of the young and exciting talents on the Toronto Blue Jays. He’s emerging as the organization’s cornerstone, a leader whose voice and commitment are setting a new standard for a franchise hungry for World Series glory.
His defensive game has been criticized in the past, but his steady improvement on the field speaks for itself. Bichette had his worst defensive year in 2022 with -16 Defensive Runs Saved and struggled to begin the 2023 season, but he saw very solid growth in his glove, ending that season with a 5 DRA and 13 fewer errors than the year prior. 
Offensively, we know what Bo is about. Slashing .306/.339/.475 in 2023, he was one of the league’s most consistent hitters until a speed bump came by way of a knee injury in a 4-2 loss to the Orioles in late July, which kept him out of the lineup for three weeks. 
“Our No. 1 priority every day is to come here and win,” Bichette stated firmly in a recent interview with the Toronto Sun. “That’s the culture we’re building, to hold each other accountable and consistently perform at our best.”
This isn’t just talk. Bichette recognizes that achieving a championship is going to require a change in the locker room, something he feels the Jays haven’t fully grasped in the past. “We’ve been decent… but we just need to be better,” he says, emphasizing the gap between postseason appearances and ultimate victory.
This desire for improvement doesn’t stem from a single series or a bad year. While some players downplay the pressure of a playoff drought, Bichette acknowledges the need for consistency throughout the season.
“I wouldn’t put it on a singular playoff series,” said Bichette. “There’s an entire season of things that leads up to that. It was the entire season, looking back on it and realizing we need to be better.”
Spring training optimism is a yearly hallmark, and Bichette is aware of this. “Things are always good in spring training,” he points out. “It’s not to say that I don’t envision it being better for a full season, but if we accomplish what we want to accomplish it’s got to be for eight months or whatever it is.”
“There’s going to be days when we want to stop and get lazy and we want to put it in neutral and coast but what’s going to separate us from everyone else is if we keep on pushing and keep on going through times that are tough.” 
The challenging days he speaks of are certain to come this season, as the Jays lost one of the league’s premier third basemen with the departure of Matt Chapman, among others. As a result, the Jays lost the third-most WAR of any team this off-season, per FanGraphs. Bichette and Co. will have to find a way to pick up the slack.
This evolving leadership role is an indication of a star becoming a franchise anchor. Bichette’s dedication to winning, paired with accountability, is the kind of attitude that can transform a team and galvanize a city. Leading alongside co-star Vladimir Guerrero Jr., the city of Toronto has reason for optimism when looking at the future of their club.

ARTICLE PRESENTED BY BETANO

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