Toronto Blue Jays: An Honest Recap of the End of 2015


A look back at the end to the Toronto Blue Jays 2015 season, and it is painfully obvious that they below it!

So now that time has set in – it totals 36 days, in what was much-needed grieving time – since the Royals eked out the 4-3 victory that ended the Toronto Blue Jays 2015 campaign, I finally feel okay enough to write about it (resigned to the facts of that game, really).

The fact that GM Alex Anthopoulos was not retained also fueled the fire of my anger and prolonged my inability to write about the Jays…

More from Toronto Blue Jays

Everybody seems to feel better by claiming: “Oh well… it was a great season.” And yes it was, but that doesn’t matter. IT SHOULDN’T HAVE ENDED LIKE THAT!! The fact is, when anyone says that consolation line above, that the Jays blew it! They should have been them hosting the Mets in the World Series, not the Royals. It should have been them hoisting the World Series trophy.

Are you now thinking Maybe this guy isn’t ready to talk about it yet? Well I am… this isn’t burning inside me, but it’ll feel better to get my pointer finger going surrounding this debacle (it needs some blood after 36 days of holding it in, where any sooner would’ve been to painful to raise this finger).

Okay, game reset: ninth inning, the Jays down one measly run. Lightning-quick Dalton Pompey, pinch-runner, was inserted on first base with Superman of an outfielder, Kevin Pillar up at the plate. Pompey promptly steals not just second base, but third base too!! With nobody out and a runner on third, the Jays had the top of the order coming up! There’s no chance they don’t score in one to tie!

Immediately I’m pleading for Pillar to bunt. He’s a capable bunter– and though he’s been hot, THE TYING RUN IS NINETY FEET AWAY! Just put down the bunt, ANYWHERE on the field on the ground, and since Pompey is the speed of sound, he’s gonna score! The game will be tied and we still have the top of the order up to bat! This looks good for the Jays.

Pillar swings. I am confused at this, but he eventually walks. Due up is Ryan Goins. Perfect I think. Goins can also bunt well.

Jul 10, 2015; Kansas City, MO, USA; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons (5) during the seventh inning against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium. Kansas City won the game 3-0. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

But just then, in a perfect situation, Jays manager John Gibbons decides to pinch hit. Whaaaaaatt? I am confounded. Okay, maybe he’s got a better bunter. I thought Goins was good, but who knows? Maybe he’s got someone who has been perfect at bunting in batting practice. I didn’t see BP – so I can’t be mad. Yet…

And then (!), I see Dioneer Navarro swinging. WHAT!? Don’t get me wrong– I’m a Navarro guy. I was peeved when the Jays overpaid Russell Martin instead of signing a position of need (I wanted Melky Cabrera back since left field was a major hole). But for this situation– a bunting one? Navarro is a great contact hitter, so maybe he can bunt (again, I’m not at batting practice). But I’m thinking he’s not gonna practice it often (or ever) because he’s slow as hell.

He’s swinging (sigh). I mean he’s a good hitter, but don’t do it! The tying run – he’s right the F there!!


Pillar steals second. So, none out, runner on third… and now second too!! They now may not just tie this, it looks like they’re gonna pull ahead since the top of the order is coming up! Just get one run home (Pompey), and Pillar will take third if they make a play at the plate OR they go to first to throw out the bunter. Then the steady Ben Revere and the incumbent MVP Josh Donaldson are up – this win is seriously inside the claws of victory. I can smell it!

STRIKE 2. So not bunting now. I feel a wave of failure creeping in – with two strikes, there’s little chance of a bunt, because a foul on a bunt results in an out.

Navarro swings again. STRIKE 3.

The wave of failure when the victory was in our hands wafts further in me. I catch a chill…

Still, Revere is up with just one out and two runners in scoring position. I still love our chances despite the possibility of failure increasing… I mean, Revere is 2/4! Outside of Bautista, who is sparking in a gasfield he is so on fire, this may be the player the Jays want up at bat most for this situation – he’s having the best day statistically (Bautista notwithstanding).

More from Tip of the Tower

There is a mini-dilemma though. Revere is hot, so do you let him swing? I say NO! He’s a great bunter and he’s got mad-wheels– he’s the perfect candidate to bunt! All we need is one run to prolong the game. Gibbons took a shot with Navarro – a questionable call – but now he’s gotta just take the tie. Then the Jays still have Pillar on third with MVP coming up.

TAKE THE TIE GIBBONS! Give the Royals some small ball back – ya know, what they’ve done in getting back in this game (and seemingly every game). Give them some of their own medicine and let your MVP win the game – let him show his value. And if they intentionally walk him, you have Bautista who’s lighting it up! Perfect. And if they walk him too, you guys have Edwin Encarnacion up. This stalwart lineup that AA has so amazingly assembled – LET IT WORK!

Revere is swinging away. I can’t even believe it – you have my reasoning right above.

Revere gets one terrible called strike on an outside pitch (before I start crying conspiracy against Canada, I’ll stay focused – but I am thinking it…). After this, Revere felt he had to swing at anything within a 1X1 metre box, out of fear it would be called a strike anyway.


Gibbons, you’re an idiot. I know all the TBS and FOX broadcasters’ newest thing is blowing smoke up your arsenal saying you’re the perfect manager for all these big bats, but I’ve always thought you were mainly useless.

All of a sudden it’s very cold in a warm upstairs, but I’m too nervous to feel it- I’m afraid of us somehow blowing this. It now feels just as likely that we’ll get zero runs and lose like this, as it does we’ll get just one run to extend the game (however, it’s very likely the fear makes losing feel invariably closer).

Snap out of it! I urge myself. It’s the MVP coming up to bat!! But he is 0/4 I realize… and his swings haven’t looked confident tonight. I’m on the edge of my seat – realizing that this could be the season. Or more magic could be in store… and if we came back from this, we have Marcus Stroman going in game seven – this is the perfect storybook. That massive seventh inning with the batflip to win last series after being down 2-0, and now coming back to win another one! I can dig it…

On a 2-1 count, Donaldson grounds a ball to the left side. For just a second I thought it was going through, but it was just my internal hope or imagination. That internal flame burnt out as the ball went right to third baseman Mike Moustakas, in perfect position.

THREE OUT. The 2015 Jays? Dead.

After the loss, I heard absolutely nobody on TV criticize Gibbons for those moronic decisions. I’m not on TV, but let me be the first: Gibby, this game, this series, this playoff, this season, the World Series, the fate of the whole country of Canada cheering on one this team, the city of Toronto just BEGGING for a winner- – it was right here.

John Gibbons, this one is on you. Runners on second and third, none out and you can’t manufacture just one run. You deserve to lose…

Lose your job actually, but this nation is blind to it with the glare from some success. It may have been a great year, but shouldn’t have ended this way. With not being able to score with that situation above, the Blue Jays didn’t deserve to win.

With the roster assembled by Alex Anthopoulos, the Jays deserved to win.

Hey Gibbons, BUNT!