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Blue Jays sweep A’s, have now won 11 of their last 13 games

May 25, 2014, 6:05 PM EDT

Jose Reyes, Jose Bautista, Melky Cabrera Jose Reyes, Jose Bautista, Melky Cabrera

The Athletics entered the weekend’s three-game set with the Blue Jays the proud owners of baseball’s best offense, averaging 5.2 runs per game. They had no idea they were about to run into a Canadian buzzsaw. The Jays, behind starters Liam Hendriks, R.A. Dickey, and J.A. Happ, held the A’s to five runs over three games including Sunday’s 3-1 victory to complete a series sweep.

If you haven’t been paying close attention, the Jays snuck into first place in the AL East after Wednesday’s win over the Red Sox and maintain their two-game edge over the second-place Yankees. The Jays have won 11 of their last 13 games. Edwin Encarnacion has been on absolute fire, blasting 12 home runs in the month of May, including six in his last seven games. His slash line is up to .254/.332/.553. Starter Mark Buehrle is 8-1 with a 2.16 ERA. Jose Bautista has 12 home runs and a .965 OPS. Dickey has turned in seven consecutive quality starts. Casey Janssen is 7-for-7 in save chances since making his season debut on May 12 after spending six weeks on the disabled list.

We don’t know if the Jays can keep playing at this level. After all, on this date last season, the Dodgers were 20-27 in last place and six games out of first place in the NL West. A lot can change between now and the end of the regular season. But as of right now, the Jays are certainly starting to draw some attention and respect, rightfully so.

  1. jcmeyer10 - May 25, 2014 at 6:14 PM

    Does with happen with Farrell in charge?

  2. wilmyers09 - May 25, 2014 at 6:27 PM

    bluejays on peds who agrees with me

    • sfp311 - May 25, 2014 at 6:42 PM

      Hey Wil, why you mad bro? Oh yea, that .655 OPS. Stats just get in the way sometimes ;)

    • indaburg - May 25, 2014 at 7:03 PM

      You’re on your own.

    • proudlycanadian - May 25, 2014 at 7:07 PM

      Flash! The Jays have admitted that they are on “poutine”. Don’t knock it if you have not tried it.

      • nbjays - May 25, 2014 at 9:25 PM

        And, as Cur would attest… seal blubber.

      • proudlycanadian - May 25, 2014 at 9:33 PM

        That is true. Can’t forget the raw seal blubber.

      • mazblast - May 25, 2014 at 11:31 PM

        And real beer.

      • proudlycanadian - May 26, 2014 at 6:02 AM

        That is a given. There is a boutique brewery across the street from the Rogers Centre. The Steam Whistle Brewery makes a refreshing beer.

  3. proudlycanadian - May 25, 2014 at 6:48 PM

    How sweet it is! Part of the difference is that Reyes is healthy and is playing well this month. He stole 3 bases today. He manufactured the insurance run by himself. Singled. Stole second. Stole third. Scored on a sacrifice fly. Over 45,000 in the stands today as Bautista and Encarnacion jersey’s were being given away. Encarnacion homered and Bautista had the other 2 RBI’s. The Jays are playing as a team. They are moving runners along, taking walks and are running up pitch counts. It is fun to watch.

    • renaado - May 25, 2014 at 7:53 PM

      The way the Blue Jays are performin, I’m expectin a huge up attendance there at home. I would’nt be surprised if the avg attendance were over 33-35000 till the end of the season if they keep this magnificent winnin style goin.

    • clydeserra - May 25, 2014 at 11:10 PM

      Reyes won the game single handedly yesterday. Sucks for me, but tip of the hat to you

  4. tablescrappy - May 25, 2014 at 7:20 PM

    The Jays looked really good, and I think they’re for real. The A’s are also at the end of their third three-city road trip of the season (they had one all of last year), had burned through their bullpen starting with Jerry Layne’s absolutely needless ejection of Scott Kazmir last weekend in Cleveland, and had already hit an offensive dry spell by the time they arrived in Toronto.

    I don’t want to take anything away from the Blue Jays because A) I love their roster and B) it’s fantastic to see them in first place over the usual, boring occupants of first in the AL East. But I would like to see them play the A’s when both teams are at their best.

    • proudlycanadian - May 25, 2014 at 7:40 PM

      The A’s hitters did seem to be a bit off. The A’s were in every game of the series and played hard.

      • clydeserra - May 25, 2014 at 11:11 PM

        lots of baserunners, not a lot of scoring. for the A’s

  5. elrock7 - May 25, 2014 at 7:24 PM

    If the Jays can stay relatively healthy this year, unlike the past few, there is no reason not to be serious contenders this season.

  6. APBA Guy - May 25, 2014 at 7:33 PM

    Good pitching and just enough offense. That’ll work. It’s what the A’s have been doing lately, and the Jays were just hot right now.

    Somewhere in exile-ville, Harry must be spinning.

    • ptfu - May 25, 2014 at 10:46 PM

      So if the Jays win the World Series, then will his head explode and he’ll be traumatized into never saying anything again? I may have to temporarily adjust my rooting interests :-)

    • clydeserra - May 25, 2014 at 11:14 PM

      No matter. this is what being unlucky is like. The jays won fair and square with good pitching defense and timely hitting, but the A’s caught 0 breaks in this series as compared to the 4 previous ones where everything came up green and golden for them.

  7. tc4306 - May 25, 2014 at 7:54 PM

    Team is getting some buzz in Toronto.
    Almost 1 000 comments on a weekend game thread
    over at Drunk Jays Fans.

  8. chill1184 - May 25, 2014 at 8:00 PM

    Interesting developments for the boys in Blue and White

    • proudlycanadian - May 25, 2014 at 8:04 PM

      Today, some of them were wearing dark pink to go with the dark blue. It looked sharp.

      • spezzdispenser - May 25, 2014 at 8:40 PM

        today is Mother’s Day in the Dominican Republic, so it was the Dominican players sporting the pink

      • proudlycanadian - May 25, 2014 at 8:51 PM

        Thanks for the information. It looked good on them.

  9. moogro - May 25, 2014 at 8:42 PM

    Harry’s hex happened. Now normal news.

  10. sportsfan18 - May 25, 2014 at 8:49 PM

    Usually is such a tough division…

    NOT this year. Both the Yanks and the Red Sox are vulnerable. The O’s don’t scare anyone either and the Rays have not been the team they usually have been the past 6 yrs or so.

    Now, I’m not saying the Blue Jays will win the division, but I’m saying they have a much better chance this season than they have had in say the last 15 yrs or so…

    I can actually see any of the teams in the division winning it this year at this point.

    Lot’s of ball still yet to play…

    Winners usually have a player or two have a career year or they have many regulars play at least to their career averages instead of having an off year (the kind of year that lowers their career average).

    Mark Buehrle is having a career year so far.

    Edwin Encarnacion might end up having a career year power/slugging wise.

    The Yanks have the money to add at the deadline though unlike most other teams…

    Should be a good race in this division this year.

    • paperlions - May 25, 2014 at 9:36 PM

      It is true that there aren’t any really good or great teams in the AL East this year, but every team is competitive….there aren’t any bad teams. Still a tough division, just not as tough as it has been.

    • mazblast - May 25, 2014 at 11:35 PM

      The Yankee$, as always, have the money to add at the deadline, but they don’t have even the faux “prospects” to send as magic beans to other teams. This isn’t the NBA, the league doesn’t help the glamor teams nearly as much.

      • renaado - May 26, 2014 at 12:22 AM

        Just me. I really should think first round draft or high pick players for every team should have the opportunity to play after bein drafted durin that year. From my standpoint though, I’m pretty sure some certain amount of players who are drafted still has a lot of confidence on himself that time after a certain team drafts him, and is pretty confident about himself on playin at the Major League level, at the Minor leagues there are bumps and bruises, some players lose their confidence when they struggle and others think of retirin while some others think they are better of with a different league or different team.

        I’ve been observin the style on what the NPB league is doin with their high draft picks, managers there always lets their high draft picks play (highschool or college) after bein drafted, they head straight to the show there. Players/managers or managers lets them play through struggles cause they want to see their potential, if they want to compete against well known veterans they must prove themselves that they deserve to be there.

        There are also timetables on when they’ll be comin back if he struggles lets just say. There’s a 1 to 2 week timetable bein ready for em and calls up the other top prospects in their Ikusei (Farm team) to replace them before he comes back then vice versa again, if potential has been shown he’ll be a regular starter in that team for years to come. Shohei Otani, Fuginami Shintaro, Matsui Yuki(Demoted back due to struggles) and Osera Daichi are the known players I know bein high picks who currently plays today and still there’s many more.

        ( Just a sayin, I hope someday this should be considered though.)

      • renaado - May 26, 2014 at 12:25 AM

        Dang it!

        Ni-gun ( Farm team).
        Ikusei (the “Show”).

      • renaado - May 26, 2014 at 12:29 AM

        Ni-gun ( Minor leagues)
        Ichi-gun( “the Show”)
        Ikusei ( Minor league player.)

      • Shayna - May 26, 2014 at 4:02 AM

        For heaven’s sake, can someone lend Renaado a supply of Gs? He reads like an escapee from a 19th-century English novel or a cheapo movie western, talkin’ about huntin’ and fishin’ and ridin’.

      • renaado - May 26, 2014 at 6:18 AM

        Shayna…. Please!! Anything but that!!

        I’ll….. Lose….. My…… Me!!
        :-(

  11. jaysfan64 - May 25, 2014 at 8:55 PM

    Last August, when asked about the Blue Jays, David Ortiz said, “I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if they come back next year and whoop everyone’s (butt).”.. It’s the way they’re winning that’s impressive – contributions from guys not even on the radar in spring training (Tolleson, Francisco, the since-retired Chris Getz, and others) – and making others take notice…

  12. quincy1959 - May 25, 2014 at 9:23 PM

    The A’s got beat by Dickey, an average pitcher recently off the DL, and a guy up from the minors. All 3 put up a good game before the Jays bullpen stepped in. They didn’t face Hutchinson or Buehrle. Despite a slow start by both SPs and RPs, the team ERA is falling this year and 2 runs a game better than last. Maybe the A’s were tired, or maybe like Texas and Boston they just ran into some good pitching and defense. Of course the Jays still need an ace, and still have questions about their pitchers as starters Morrow hurt and McGowan off to the pen, but right now the pitchers are making the Jays a really good team by keeping them in games.

    The Jays also just came off a long road trip. Cleveland, Texas and Boston. Maybe not as many miles, but their final road series a sweep. Lots of homers while on the road. The A’s series brought the Jays over 500 at home to go with a nice road record.

    The Jays offense is for real. Power 1-8 when Rasmus back. But also playing small ball, walking, and using some speed on the base paths they didn’t have a month ago. They offense is starting to worry other teams. EE, Lawrie and Reyes each have seen averages rise over 20 points and are climbing. Even the backups of Thole .360, Franciso .280 (8 Hrs), Pillar .304 and Gose .296 tell you their offense is hot. There are no soft spots in this line up.

    Are they for real? Maybe we will know after they have played Detroit and St. Louis. But if they acquire a quality pitcher in the coming weeks and stay healthy, they should do well even if some of the bats cool off as long as their pitching holds up. Right now they lead the east, and only a game and a half behind the A’s and Tigers. This is a team worth watching.

  13. janessa31888 - May 25, 2014 at 10:52 PM

    Dirty Harry weeps bitter tears. Hee hee hee. I have a fondness for Canadians (except when they kick our tail in hockey at the Olympics.) And the Blue Jays kindly gave us two quality players in exchange for the wretched Esmil Rogers. So I wish them well, playing in that very tough division

  14. gbart22 - May 25, 2014 at 11:28 PM

    Not going to lie kind of exciting to see them playing well even as a non fan much like it was last season with Pitt and a few years ago with Milwaukee

    • mazblast - May 25, 2014 at 11:38 PM

      Especially since the even occasional prosperity of teams like the Pirates, Jays, Indians, etc., makes the fans of the “glamor teams” go ‘splody.

      “They can’t do that!”
      “Uh, yes, they can. It’s called development, scouting, good management; you know, those things you guys ignore because you can buy talent instead.”

      • clydeserra - May 26, 2014 at 2:00 AM

        (And in the Jays case, taking on a metric tin of salary)

  15. paint771 - May 26, 2014 at 2:37 AM

    It was fantastic to see the fans streaming into the game today, and to see Rogers Center packed to the rafters again. I hope ownership takes note – this is a franchise that still has the potential to be among the tops in attendance, you just have to field a competitive team.

    Anyway, the truth is that the Jays have fielded “good but not great” teams for years, and in truth in any other division, would have been an every-now-and-then playoff team since the late 90s. They’ve just been buried in an AL East that has so totally been dominated by three of the best franchises in baseball during that stretch – literally, the BoSox, Yanks, and Rays of that same period have been among the best franchises in baseball history, all clustered together in the same time and place. This is a franchise that would have been a perennial second place team in any other division. It’s sucked balls for us Jays fans (and Baltimore, I feel for you too), because while everyone else has tuned us out, we’ve gotten to see some great baseball. But despite their lack of postseason appearances, this has been a solid franchise unfairly written off. And, since the emergence of Bautista and AA, this team has looked for two or three years like they could be a dark horse, they’ve just never quite gotten there. And I’ve found it weird that the same basic team that people were picking to win the World Series last year people were picking to finish last this year. It’s not like last year they lost a lot because the core group of players sucked. They lost a lot because the core group of players never took the field at the same time, as they were decimated with injuries and frankly as bad luck as anybody in the AL faced.

    Anyway, it’s great to see them finally putting it together in a suddenly weak division (the reason AA made all the trades prior to last year in the first place was for precisely that reason; just didn’t work out last year). It’s great to see them adding another dimension of manufacturing runs in addition to their usual bombing. Their defense and pitching have been nice surprises lately. And, as importantly, this is a team that has often seemed to hold a “win some lose some” culture – a professional detachment to the ebbs and flows of how they’re doing in the division that at times borders on apathy. Lately, though, they seem to have gotten a taste for winning (the fans too), and I sure hope that holds.

  16. gloccamorra - May 26, 2014 at 10:24 AM

    So Alex Anthopoulos’ job is safe?

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