5 things to watch as Blue Jays’ focus abruptly shifts to next season

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The post-season ended shortly after it started for the Toronto Blue Jays. The Seattle Mariners shut out the Blue Jays in Game 1 final Friday and got here again from a seven-run deficit in a 10-9 victory a day later to full a two-game sweep.

The wild-card sequence exit has compelled Toronto’s workforce brass to shift focus to the off-season and 2023 marketing campaign. Here’s a take a look at 5 things to watch as the Blue Jays goal to make enhancements for next yr.

Next step

The unpredictable nature of a brief best-of-three sequence is a problem for all groups within the wild-card combine.

The prime two division winners are rewarded with first-round byes and may relaxation a bit simpler figuring out they’ve home-field benefit in an extended best-of-five set.

Winning the East Division and securing a top-two end within the American League can be a essential aim for the Blue Jays in 2023. The wild-card spherical has not been sort with two sweeps within the final three years.

Pitching depth will want to be addressed to have an honest likelihood at a division crown. A left-handed bat or two would additionally assist.

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Rotation fluctuation

The entrance finish of Toronto’s beginning rotation is among the greatest within the massive leagues. The again finish wants work if the Blue Jays are going to contend.

Alek Manoah has emerged as an ace of the workers and Kevin Gausman delivered in his first season with the workforce.

Pending free agent Ross Stripling was dependable however Jose Berrios was inconsistent and Yusei Kikuchi landed within the bullpen. Mitch White struggled mightily and Hyun-Jin Ryu might not be prepared to play next season after elbow surgical procedure.

Even if Stripling have been to return, at the least yet one more starter is required. A reduction crew that has been center of the pack over the past couple years additionally wants consideration.

Interim tag

The Blue Jays have been 46-28 below supervisor John Schneider after he changed the fired Charlie Montoyo in July.

The interim place lasted till the tip of the season. Now the Blue Jays have to determine whether or not Schneider can be again as a full-time skipper.

Toronto had an uneven first half and stabilized within the second half below Schneider. The Blue Jays gained 92 video games general and earned the fourth general seed within the American League.

Blue Jays normal supervisor Ross Atkins praised Schneider’s efficiency at his end-of-season availability however stated extra time is required earlier than a last determination is made.

Time to experiment?

It’s fairly attainable the Blue Jays strive some experimentation to maximize roster depth.

Could centre-fielder George Springer transfer to proper discipline? Could Bo Bichette be moved to second base? Could catcher Gabriel Moreno be used within the discipline?

Off-season additions and trades might impression potential place adjustments however the Blue Jays might get inventive when spring coaching begins in February.

Anchor extension

The off-season will current one other alternative to sign key gamers to long-term extensions if either side are open to it.

The anchors of the workforce’s younger core — Bichette and first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. — nonetheless stay below workforce management for 3 extra seasons.

Main place gamers are all below contract for 2023 so the workforce might very nicely have the same look.

However, the strain can be heightened for a workforce that made small steps this yr however underachieved. This membership is in win-now mode and one other first-round exit could be a giant disappointment.

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