Thursday, May 29, 2014


Encarnacion: his power stroke "hotted up" in May...
The Blue Jays let one get away tonight, blowing a 6-5 lead in the top of the ninth when Jose Reyes bounced a throw on what should have been the final out of the game; the Royals then scored twice in the tenth to bring an end to Toronto's nine-game win streak.

Still, it's been a good month for the Jays (20-8 thus far)...and, as we told you before the start of the 2014 campaign, they've got an actual shot at the playoffs--if they can get their pitching straightened out (particularly the bullpen).

Edwin Encarnacion has hit 16 HRs this month, and many of the other Jays have hit well, so it would be accurate to state that Toronto has hit its way into first place.

Oddly enough, May has been boom time for the Jays during the entire decade. Since 2010, they have the best won-loss record in May (82-56), a game and a half better than the Cincinnati Reds--and six games better than the next best team in the AL (White Sox).

Over the past five Mays, the Blue Jays have hit 208 HR, more than forty more than the next best team (the Red Sox, with 166). They've scored the most runs (732), and have the highest slugging average (.458).

Jose Bautista: cooled off in June...
June, however, has been a different story: while the Jays are still the team with most HR (132 in the four Junes from 2010-13), they rank sixteenth in run scoring for that time slice. As a result, they're under .500 (51-55, .481).

One of the main reasons for the difference between May and June is the hitting of Jose Bautista. Jose has a batting line of .308/.416/.616/1.033 in May; in June, however, that line is only .234/.357/.504/.861.

For what it's worth, the Jays had a fine month of June in 2013 (17-9), led by their pitching (2.91 ERA). If they could do that again in 2014, they would definitely have their AL East opponents quaking in their boots. One of the pitchers who had a hand in last year's hot June, however, was Esmil Rogers--whose career has cratered since then. With a thin rotation and an unstable pen, the Jays will have to keep those hitting shoes dusted off next month to keep on keepin' on...