Over an advertiser-sponsored dinner last night with both Mrs. SF and Mrs. YF, YF and I were off in our own little universe discussing the state of the division. At one point, I questioned why the Blue Jays seemed to be getting a free pass on the "downside" argument. That is, everyone keeps saying how the Yankees could win 100 games, but that their staff is so shaky they could win 85 games. Same with the Sox – Peter Gammons just this past week (ESPN Insider, unfortunately) re-raised the possibility of a Red Sox implosion, a lazy supposition that has been beaten to death all over the blogosphere, by Sox lovers and haters alike. A quick snippet:
The 2006 Red Sox could be 95-wins good. They also could be a third-place team that is a lot closer to the Orioles than the Yankees. This is reality. They knew it was coming.
No shit, Peter.
But the Blue Jays, who have been touted as an up-and-comer, and who made significant splashes in this year’s free agent market, have largely escaped this downside speculation despite a very shaky rotation full of health risks. At times they have been boosted as the new kids on the block, ready to challenge the Yankees and Sox. But as far as I can tell they have also been immune from the questioning that this site’s two namesake teams have faced. Not any more.