2021 Toronto Blue Jays Predictions and Odds to Win the World Series
Since winning back-to-back World Series titles in 1992 and 1993, the Blue Jays have been an afterthought in the American League East. Between 1994 and 2014, the Jays finished better than third place just one time before winning the AL East in 2015 with a record of 93-69. The Jays went on to lose in the ALCS to the Royals that season. The following year, the Jays finished second in the AL East, only to make the playoffs and lose to the Cleveland Indians in the ALCS. Three straight fourth-place finishes followed before making the playoffs last year.
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Last season, the Jays finished with a record of 32-28, which was good enough for third in the AL East and one of the wild-card spots in the expanded playoffs. They went on to get swept by the Tampa Bay Rays. However, when you look at their season as a whole, it was pretty good. They played their “home games” in Buffalo, and the roster took a major step forward. This year, the expectations are even higher for the Jays.
The Blue Jays will open the regular season on April 1 with a three-game series at Yankee Stadium against the New York Yankees. From there, the Jays will travel to Texas for a three-game set against the Rangers before hosting their home opener in Dunedin, Florida on April 8 against the Los Angeles Angels. The Blue Jays come into this season as possible World Series contenders as they check in at +2000. They are +850 to win the AL Pennant and +350 to win the AL East. Their win total has been set at 86.5.
Blue Jays 2021 Projected Lineup
One quick look at the Blue Jays’ batting order and you’ll quickly see why they are projected to make the postseason and quite possibly make some noise once they are there. Their projected lineup for opening day looks like this:
- George Springer
- Bo Bichette
- Marcus Semien
- Teoscar Hernandez
- Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
- Cavan Biggio
- Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
- Rowdy Tellez
- Danny Jansen
It’s been a very busy and lucrative offseason for the Blue Jays, who are expecting the additions to the lineup to get them over the hump and push them to contend in the AL East and well into October. The Jays benefitted (as much as they could) from playing in a smaller ballpark in Buffalo, but this year they’ll be playing in Dunedin, Florida, at their spring training facility. That should help the cause as the lineup figures to be one of the best in the AL, and it starts at the top with the newly acquired George Springer.
Springer comes to town from the Astros, and he’s been a monster at the plate over the last handful of years. Since 2016, Spring has hit 29, 34, 22, 39 and 14 homeruns, driven in 82, 85, 71, 96 and 32. He also hits for average and steals bases, which is what you need out of your leadoff man. This season, he’s projected to hit 31 homeruns, while keeping his average around .270.
Beyond him, and the meat of the order, features Bichette, the newly acquired Semien, Hernandez, and Guerrero Jr. The latter two players are expected to lead the Jays in homeruns, with Hernandez slated for 36 and Vlad Jr. 27. Both guys had solid seasons last year. Therefore, with another year in a shoebox type park, the numbers are going to be there.
The biggest issue is the bottom of the lineup, where Tellez and Jansen occupy. However, if they can get some timely hits and turn the lineup over for the big guys, the Jays will never be out of a game.
Blue Jays 2021 Projected Rotation & Closer
The Blue Jays pitching staff will be the biggest question mark for this season. They are trotting out the same four guys from last year, with the newest addition being Steven Matz.
Hyun Jin Ryu had a Cy Young caliber season in his first year with the Jays, pitching to a 5-2 record in 12 starts, with a 2.69 ERA. He’s the undoubted ‘ace’ of the staff, and it’ll be up to him to continue the winning streaks or stop the bleeding should it come to that.
Beyond him, Robbie Ray, Tanner Roark, Steven Matz and Ross Stripling are all pitchers looking to have bounce-back seasons. Each one of these pitchers had an ERA north of 5.84, with Stripling coming in at that mark. Matz is the newest addition from the New York Mets, and the Blue Jays are expecting him to be better than the 0-5 record he pitched to last year.
As for the bullpen, there are a few new faces this season, but this group is still one of the weaker links on the team. Newly acquired Kirby Yates is expected to do the closing this year, and the projections see him saving around 27 games. Tyler Chatwood (Cubs) and David Phelps (Phillies) are the other two new additions looking to bolster the bullpen.
Blue Jays 2021 Predictions
FanGraphs projects the Blue Jays to finish with a record of 88-74, which would put them second in the AL East. That record would be good enough for a wild-card spot. I love the lineup as I think it has depth, but the pitching staff is the biggest concern for me. I’m not sure I can trust them to finish that high above .500, but I’ll be rooting them on.
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