The offense finally came alive for the Toronto Blue Jays over the past week, leading them to a 5-1 record on the road.
The only Jays defeat came in their first game, 7-3 to the St. Louis Cardinals. They quickly avenged the next night with an 8-1 victory. That wrapped up a two-game mini-series and the Blue Jays then headed to Los Angeles for a four-game series with the Angels.
It isn’t often you see a team sweep a four-game series on the road, but that’s exactly what happened in this one as Toronto piled up runs, scoring six, four, six and finally 11 runs to finish its road trip on a very high note. The 11 runs were particularly impressive as offensive leader Vladimir Guerrero sat the game out.
The Blue Jays are still one of the Ontario sports betting favorites to win the World Series with current odds of +1000, a slight improvement on last week’s number.
In the AL East, the New York Yankees continue to lead the way but Toronto is behind them and can be bet at odds of +375 to win the division, according to BetMGM Ontario.
Updated World Series Odds
Jays’ Offense Finally Shows Up
Over the past week, Toronto got offense from a lot of different sources, including Guerrero, who finally broke out of a long home run drought in the 8-1 victory over St Louis, belting his eighth of the year. He backed that up with his ninth in the next game as he started to propel the team’s offense forward.
Surprisingly enough it wasn’t the long ball that did all of the work for the Blue Jays during the week, as they had only one home run over their last three games despite scoring 21 runs in that timeframe. The offense is putting runs on the board without having to rely on home runs, a scary thought for the rest of the league as you know big games are coming from Guerrero, George Springer, Teoscar Hernandez, Bo Bichette and Matt Chapman.
The depth has also been excellent with Danny Jansen delivering a two-homer game and Lourdes Guerriel and Rafael Tapia also providing run support from the bottom of the lineup.
Jays’ Pitching Does Just Enough
The pitching staff didn’t have its strongest week, but for once the offense was able to do its job and deliver some wins anyway. For a team that had been getting solid pitching but not taking advantage of it enough, this was a great sign.
The way this roster is built is clearly around the offense, so the most consistent way the Blue Jays will stack up wins is by relying on their bats and just having the pitching staff do enough to keep them ahead on the scoreboard. Going a full week with this template and getting rewarded with a 5-1 record was exactly what the team needed and something they will surely build on going forward.
Jose Berrios struggled in his two starts to bookend the week, starting the only loss of the week and also getting pulled after just over two innings on Sunday against the Angels after giving up six earned runs in a game that required a huge offensive performance to salvage a win. Hyun Jin Ryu was also pulled early from his start with some injury concerns, but appears to be on track to make his next start.
Alek Manoah continued his excellent pitching and continues to show he should be considered the leader of this pitching staff. Kevin Gausman also had another fine start. Those two have easily been the Blue Jays best and most consistent pitchers all season long and give the offense a lot of leeway when they take the mound.
The Week Ahead for Jays
Moving forward Toronto has another six-game week with two three-game homestands, one against the Chicago White Sox and one against the Minnesota Twins, the top two teams in the AL Central.
The Yankees, with a 5.5-game lead in the AL East, have a somewhat easier schedule. They don’t play Monday, but then host the Los Angeles Angels and Detroit Tigers.
If the offense can keep the momentum going and the pitching continues to be strong there’s no reason the Jays can’t keep chipping away at the Yankees’ division lead and improve their odds to win the division, and ultimately the World Series. The Jays started the season as one of the favorites to win it all.