As of right now the Jays are only 5 games out of a very tight AL Wild card race. With a whole month left of baseball to play, it wouldn’t be totally insane for the Jays to win a few and make that final push for a wild card spot.
The next two series for Toronto are the Twins, followed by the Red Sox. The Sox are cruising right now so that will definitely be the tougher of the two series, but if they manage to sweep the Twins they would gain some series ground. At 60 and 66 they’re no where near the worst of the cellar dweller teams (i.e. The Giants. What happened there?) You could look at the rest of the Jays calendar and think, it’s a rough September, or you could look at it and say this team has an opportunity that is just waiting to be seized.
Stroman remains the ace of the staff, and while Estrada and Happ have struggled a bit more this year, overall I think the rotation is still pretty solid. It also helps that they didn’t end up trading away any key offensive pieces this year around the trade deadline. Rumors had been floating around regarding Donaldson and possibly Bautista, which had they’d been moved I think would have changed this conversation completely.
At the beginning of the season I had picked them to be neck and neck for first in the AL East with the Red Sox. Despite their struggles this season they can still put up big offensive numbers when Donaldson, Smoak, Pillar, and Bautista are hot. The heart of that order can be deadly.
That consistency is going to be key especially when they get down towards the end of September. They have a tough last two weeks with a series against Boston and then the Yankees. I have a new found soft spot for the Jays with them being the under dog this season in the AL East and I would love to see them win over that second wild card spot after everyone had already counted them out.