Blue Jess seeks to remove the recent history of slow beginnings

DUNEDIN, Fla. – Here’s a question for you: In recent years, has the Blue Jays generally started off as good or bad?

“If memory serves, I’d think of starting at a slower pace,” said Jordan Romano, a Markham, close to Ant. Natives who longed for the Blue Jays. “I don’t know the numbers but I’ll definitely guess at the slow start.”

Romano remembers exactly. In the last 10 years, the Blue Jays have ended the month of April with just two six-month losing and a winning record at just .500:

2012: 12-11
2014: 12-15
2013: 10-17
2015: 11-12
2016: 11-14
2017: 8-17
2018: 16-12
2019: 14-15
2020: NA
2021: 12-12

In total, they posted a 106-125 record for the combined winning percentage of .459 in March and April. But since May 1, they have gone above .500 for some strong finishes.

“That’s exactly what I remember,” Romano said. “But I don’t think that’s going to be the case here. I think we’re going to get out of the hot gate. We know we’re going to be Toronto. There is no uncertainty and this too is quite comforting. I don’t think there’s a reason we couldn’t get out of the gate. “

Throughout the long season, no one month can sink a season. Or these slow beginnings do not reflect some consistent lack of preparation or intensity. We are talking about a list that has changed more than once in the last decade, a coaching staff that is almost completely different and a new front office. This is more of a small-sample randomness than an organizational error.

But whether or not there is a compelling reason for this pattern, Blue Jess could use really strong startups that have generally avoided them in recent years. Plus, they’re opening a home in Toronto for the first time in three years. But their schedule will be tough, with multiple series against the Red Sox and Astros in the early months of the season.

“And the Yankees,” added manager Charlie Montoya. “It simply came to our notice then. We are going to do our best. Of course, when you play such a team, you have to do your best to beat them. “

“We’re fine now,” Vladimir Guerrero Jr. added via interpreter Hector LeBron. “We know each other 100 percent now and when you know your teammates and what they can do, I think we’re in a good position to have a good season.”

But, as Montoya points out, a slow start does not completely destroy a team. The 2015-16 Blue Jays teams have proven a lot, and some recent World Series winners have made that point even stronger.

The 2019 nationals were 12-16 at the end of April and 37-40 at the end of June before a strong finish and it all won. Last year’s World Series winners followed the same path. Atlanta went 12-14 last April and they were below .500 to make some timely trades on their way to just one championship in late August.

It is clear that the Blue Jays are hoping for a strong start. But Montoya has recently seen himself digging into some of these numbers, and his results have encouraged him.

“When you look at the teams that won the whole thing, their start was slow and then they got hot,” he said. “It’s funny how it works. So I don’t think it will mean that much. Of course we want to win every match. That’s true. But we don’t panic if the team we have doesn’t start to heat up.”

So what can the Blue Jays do to get them off to a good start? They have carefully managed the workload of the players in the spring and the players have now talked to each other about the importance of resting as much as possible. Those efforts seem to be paying off as they prepare to start the season with a completely healthy roster, excluding Net Pearson, who will start the season on the injured list after being caught with mononucleosis.

They may also have the advantage of a home field as unvaccinated visiting players will not be eligible to play in Toronto for the time being. Otherwise, there is nothing to do but field the best possible team and believe that this time will be different.

“You see how important a game was last year,” Romano said. “It simply came to our notice then. We have a lot of games in the first month – probably more than usual. We know what we’re up against. But those games are going to be big. Check us out and hopefully we’ll get to the top. “

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