The Detroit Tigers are coming off a season where they went 64-98 and traded away Justin Verlander, J.D. Martinez, Alex Avila, and Justin Upton. Detroit saw the writing on the wall, had the foresight to begin their re-build, and traded away much of their best talent. The Blue Jays on the other hand, with the exception of Joe Smith and a struggling Francisco Liriano, decided to keep most of their core intact.
The results of these two polar opposite approaches to building a team is that the Tigers are now youthful, energetic, and play with an enthusiasm for the game that’s a pleasure to watch. Whereas the Blue Jays are slow, predictable, and often don’t even look like they want to be out there.
It’s not that the Tigers are more talented than the Blue Jays, they just want it more. And it was the same story two weeks ago when Toronto played a mediocre Oakland team that swept the unmotivated Blue Jays.
I could care less if the Blue Jays lose far more games than they win this season. Like many of you, I was around all those years when Toronto missed out on the post-season 21 consecutive seasons. What irks me though, is when the players play nowhere near what they’re capable on account of a lack of effort, interest, passion, or whatever it is that’s keeping these Blue Jays from giving it their very best.
Veteran players can be wonderful leaders and an essential part of any ball club. They can also be toxic to the chemistry and success of a team when there are too many of them like the Blue Jays have. Last season the Blue Jays desperately needed an injection of energy, and they got that when Teoscar Hernandez was called up in September. Unfortunately, the 2019 Blue Jays are even older and less motivated than last years team. It’s sad to say but this years Blue Jays are in desperate need of something serious to shake some life into this ball club.