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The Jays have loaded up in the off-season like few teams before them. They kept the heart of their offense--sluggers Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion and youngster Brett Lawrie--and added veteran talent like Melky Cabrera, Emilio Bonafacio and Jose Reyes: all base-stealing threats with good bats. Cy Young winner R. A. Dickey may not repeat his 2012 performance, but he brings a workhorse mentality to the team and will anchor the staff if former Marlins all-star Josh Johnson does not. Mark Buehrle is another excellent addition. So, with three new everyday regulars and three new starting pitchers acquired via trades, yes, Toronto should definitely challenge for a World Series berth this year.
Trying to predict who is going to win the World Series when we have just started exhibition games is generally a fool’s errand. The people who cover baseball for a living are often wrong, so what chance do casual (or even not so casual) fans of baseball have of predicting the outcome of the season?
At least some experts seem to think that the Blue Jays have a good chance to win the World Series. Last year, their pitching was terrible, but they’ve picked up three starters who are supposed to be good. I’m not sure I believe that R. A. Dickey will be able to be great again as I don’t really think knuckleballers are safe bets, but their pitching is still expected to be good. They’ve picked up some good position players too. Getting Jose Reyes from the Marlins is widely seen as a steal.
I think the Jays are also helped by the competition in their division. The Yankees got destroyed in the playoffs last year and are rather old. Boston was terrible. So you have the two perennial contenders looking like they might be down. But who knows? The Blue Jays seem to have a better chance than they have in a while.
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