The 2020 MLB season is now a 60-game dash, starting on July 23 and ending, hopefully, with a full-size postseason in October. Between now and the start of the season, we’ll be giving quick capsule previews of each team, reminding you of where things stood back in Spring Training and where they stand now as we embark on what is sure to be the strangest season in baseball history. Next up: The Toronto Blue Jays roster and schedule:
BLUE JAYS ROSTER (projected)
When the season opens on July 23-24, teams can sport rosters of up to 30 players, with a minimum of 25. Two weeks later, rosters must be reduced to 28 and then, two weeks after that, they must be reduced to 26. Teams will be permitted to add a 27th player for doubleheaders.
In light of that, there is a great degree of latitude for which specific players will break summer camp. For now, though, here are who we expect to be on the Blue Jays roster to begin the season:
Time to see how that excellent core of young position players is developing. Bichette, Biggio, Gurriel, and Guerrero are all another year older and are ready to establish themselves. It may be too much to ask all of them to do so — they’re still pretty green — but a coordinated breakout for these guys could radically alter the AL East race. For Guerrero’s part, he’ll now be a first baseman and a DH rather than struggling as a third baseman, so that should help. Beyond the core, Shaw and Panik are new faces who could play nice complementary roles.
The rotation, in contrast, is pretty radically different after the offseason acquisitions of Ryu, Roark and Anderson. As is the case all over Major League Baseball these days, of course, there will be a lot of fluidity in the staff, with the short season making roles even less certain for a lot of the pitchers listed above. Borucki, Kay, Sean Reid-Foley, and Pearson will all likely see action, either as starters or long men after openers, or in some other role. There’s decent pitching depth on the club, even if there are ceilings on a lot of the pitchers.
The Jays lost 95 last year, so don’t necessarily expect miracles. But they’re a club definitely ready to turn the corner and the short season might make that easier. There’s definitely some excitement surrounding them. They should be fun to watch.
BLUE JAYS SCHEDULE:
Every team will play 60 games. Teams will be playing 40 games against their own division rivals and 20 interleague games against the corresponding geographic division from the other league. Six of the 20 interleague games will be “rivalry” games.
Blue Jays home stands — though we’re not exactly sure where “home” will be yet given the different rules for people traveling into Canada — will be July 29-August 2 (Nationals, Phillies), August 11-16 (Marlins, Rays), August 25-21 (Red Sox, Orioles), September 7-13 (Yankees, Mets), September 21-27 (Yankees, Orioles).