Thursday, May 9, 2013

Toronto Blue Jays 2013: Season So Far & Future Odds Predictions

In just over a month, we’ve seen only a fraction of the 2013 Toronto Blue Jays, but it has been a brutal start to the season. The once preseason World Series favorites have yet to hit their stride and find themselves 9 games under .500 as we enter Thursday’s game.
Are these Jays still World Series contenders? Was all the media created hype justified during the offseason? These are questions still waiting to be answered, but no one could be impressed with what they have seen early on.
We’ll take a look at the Jays’ future odds for the World Series, AL Pennant and AL East Title. On top of that we’ll analyze some key parts of the season so far and if we think this team has what it takes to compete in the postseason.
Free Swinging Ways
Manager John Gibbons has used over 26 different lineups this season, not only due to injuries to Jose Reyes (podcast), Jose Bautista and others but because he can’t figure out a way to get his offense clicking.
Toronto ranks near the bottom of the AL in runs scored and in OBP. A quick look at a box score of most games shows a team of hitters below .300 and many closer to the Mendoza Line rather than the .250 mark. In all of baseball, they also rank near the bottom in batting average. The lineup certainly has pop but has struggled with strikeouts.
Given all of those imperfections, fans may have some reasons to be optimistic. Their BABIP is around .260 which is among the lowest in the majors. This SABRmetric statistic measures the percentage of balls hit into play that fall in for hits. Of course, there are other factors that have contributed to their offensive struggles but based on their team BABIP, but the Jays’ luck will begin to even out, and the hits will start falling, like they have been the past few days.
Jose Reyes’ loss after just week into the season seriously hurt the team’s run production. With a lineup full of mostly power hitters – who are prone to strike out or homer – it is critical to have a player whose specialty is getting on base.
All Star Rotation? Not so much.
The rotation coming into the season was almost as hotly discussed as the improved Jays’ lineup. After one month, it is severely under performing. R.A Dickey has not regained his magic with the knuckler yet and may be headed to DL with neck and back inflammation. Brandon Morrow, Mark Buehrle, and Ricky Romero have all struggled, while both J.A Happ and Josh Johnson are on the DL.
Surprisingly, one of the biggest weaknesses that the Jays had before entering the season has been strong. The bullpen has been solid despite already throwing over 100 innings this season, due to starters pitchers being pulled so early. However, things will need to change as the pen is being overworked and likely will not perform well under this soft of wear and tear all season.
Current Future Odds 
These odds are provided by I’m not recommending Bovada to bet with as I don’t know much about them but leading portal SBO rates them as pretty good.
Toronto Blue Jays to Win World Series 28/1
Toronto Blue Jays to Win AL Pennant 12/1
Toronto Blue Jays to Win AL East +650
As I mentioned above, the Jays came into the start of the season as 15/2 World Series favorites by the odds makers. The odds clearly have now been adjusted, reflecting their poor start to the season.
The AL East is an especially unforgiving division and a lousy April can come back to haunt a team later in the year. However, if we look at it from a betting perspective - if you believe the Jays will turn around their season – now is the time to get the best possible price on your selection.
They have undoubtedly had their share of rotten luck and most everyone would agree that at – at least on paper – they have what it takes to contend for a championship. Bettors have yet to see this team actually click and who knows how good they could be when that finally happens.  

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