Toronto Blue Jays: Report Card for first half of 2020 season

The Toronto Blue Jays celebrate after defeating the Boston Red Sox. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images)
The Toronto Blue Jays celebrate after defeating the Boston Red Sox. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Blue Jays
Cavan Biggio #8 of the Toronto Blue Jays looks to turn a double play as Kevin Kiermaier #39 of the Tampa Bay Rays slides into second base. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /

Blue Jays defence better than expected

Defensive metrics in baseball can get confusing when you start to look at advanced stats. It can be hard to quantify just how good a team is defensively simply by watching them play.

This is certainly the case with the Blue Jays because if you ask anyone who watches the team on a regular basis they would probably tell you that this is a below-average defensive team that makes a lot of mistakes.

They don’t have anyone player who stands out as being an elite defender at their position. However, when you take a deeper dive into the numbers, the Jays have actually been slightly above average this season. UZR is a stat used to put a run value on defence. According to Fangraphs, it attempts to quantify how many runs a player saved or gave up through their fielding ability. The Blue Jays rank 6th in the league in UZR so far this season, with a rating of 3.6. A rating of 0 is considered average, with 5+ being above average.

Due to the number of postponed games so far this season some teams have played way more games than others. Because of this, UZR can be skewed and not as accurate. UZR/150 is a more accurate way of looking at things because it scales the stats to a 150 game basis. Toronto’s UR/150 is currently sitting at 5.2, good enough for 7th overall.

Although fielding percentage and errors don’t really give you a true profile of how good a team is defensively, it’s still fair to look at those numbers. The Jays have 18 errors this season (16th), with a fielding percentage of .983 (15th).

This is a far cry from a terrible defensive team, so it’s only fair to give them a good grade and continue to watch how they perform the rest of the season.

Grade: B