Ross Atkins and Blue Jays braintrust look like geniuses, but they’re still cheapskates

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How well are the Toronto Blue Jays doing these days? So good that Marcus Strowman wants to come back.

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This is the same Strowman whose clubhouse meltdown happened when he was told the team had traded him two years ago. The same Strowman who told the Toronto Sun that the Jays lied about offering him a new deal. “I’m glad I’m no longer a part of it,” Strowman said.

Well, good news, Toronto liars. all is forgiven.


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Now that Strowman is a free agent, the pitcher jumped on some Rando’s social-media suggestion that he return to the Jays.

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“I’m definitely open to a reunion,” Strowman said.

This makes it one of them.

Strowman’s Convenient Amnesia – “Say, Didn’t We Hate Each Other?” Will be contagious. Soon, many people who may not have given Jace a first glance, don’t care a second, want what they’re up to.

If you listen to what the Jays are saying, they’ve moved past the “pathetic flirtation with every available free agent” phase, and have entered their “calling gentlemen who accept” phase. .

It’s an awkward position for the loser to find himself in. But this year’s Jays are a strange team.

If you want to get into the technicalities about it, the season was disappointing. Toronto was loaded up front with high-end talent, all of it either young or cheaply bought temporarily. And it finished fourth in the American League East. Same as it ever was.

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But some teams manage to lose outright. They just fall short instead of their faces. They are agile and fun. People like them and want to know them. They leave the feeling of a group on the brink.

In baseball this year, as is that team. He is the lucky loser of MLB.

If they had places of business, do you think like that would be where the Yankees are now?

The Yankees made their final at-bat postseason on the final day of the regular season. Fabulous Story. Unless you’re from the Bronx, where the Yankees have to make the playoffs in August.

New York won the Toronto desired wild-card spot. I think “win” is the right word, but it didn’t turn out so well.

Toronto ended their season with pride and hope. New York ended its season in confusion and incompetence. If you can lose the right way, it’s also possible to win the wrong way.

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Winning the wrong way is happening somewhere, but nowhere near as much as you and everyone else expected. It’s coming out of the top of your head. This is just looking like you are: old, awkward and out of ideas.

After Boston beat the Yankees in an AL wild-card game on Monday, New York manager Aaron Boone had to come out and make the best of it. Boone has never left the postseason as the Yankees’ boss, but you’d still call him a failure. Every time he tries and misses, his team feels more and more irrelevant.

Now, Boone is in his King Lear era.

“The league closed the gap on us,” said Boone, head down, face drawn, moaning flowing from him. “It’s not just the Red Sox and Astros. Look at our department. The Rays are animals. Toronto.”

Jace didn’t take advantage of an adjective, but anyone who’s watched the game knows what it means. As soon as a man starts saying, “They’re coming after us,” it means he’s about to pass.

The rest of baseball may not have remembered that memo. Yankees: Tired; Blue Jays: Wired.

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With that in mind, Jays general manager Ross Atkins performed his 2021 autopsy on Wednesday.

In the past, these have gone down like a race through an ornate obstacle course. Atkins tries to fill 30 minutes of air time without making a single definitive statement.

It still works in the same mode. (Why not him? It’s working for him so far.) But now he’s more sly.

Atkins and the Blue Jays don’t run the best team in braintrust baseball, but they can control the sexiest. Toronto is the team the losers want to be and the winners want to be with.

For example, when asked about the first two orders of business off-season — Robbie Ray, Marcus Semien and the huge pay increases they would both expect — Atkins downplayed the blatant obscenity.

Two years ago, hanging one of them would have been an acid test of his resolve. Now, it’s hardly registered.

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“I hope they continue [great] year after year, and hopefully we can be a part of it,” Atkins said. “But it was very satisfying to be a part of it for a year.”

In other words, good luck elsewhere, guys. If you need some tickets or something, please don’t hesitate to text my assistant’s assistant’s apprentice.

On common questions, Atkins filed general answers. Are you happy where you are? never! Does this mean that you will be getting better on average? Perhaps! Do you have enough money to do this? Perhaps!

The difference this time is that Jess Braintrust has resumed control of the narrative. Two years ago, they were stupid and cheapskate. Now, they are talented and cheapskate.

In that case, it becomes very tempting to switch your way to the next obstacle. He almost managed it this year. Why not do it better next year? And maybe they can.

As exciting as the Jays are, as long as they are at it in September, as long as the young stars make small improvements, people will continue in their new belief that this is a can’t-miss team at Make. That glory is inevitable.

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Winning games is difficult. But convincing your customers that the promised land is right on top of the next growth? Or the next one? or next? This is something more special than a playoff performance.


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