The Toronto Blue Jays are fourth in the tough American League East, with a 61-51 record.
They have the bad luck of being in perhaps the most competitive division in baseball, with four teams with at least 60 wins.
The National League East, as of Wednesday afternoon, has no 60-game winners.
Therefore, the Blue Jays would be division leaders in the NL East.
That’s not the case, though, and Toronto has to overcome several teams in the standings in order to get to the playoffs.
Are they good enough to do that?
The answer is yes.
The Blue Jays Are Still Close In The Standings
There are currently far from a lock to make it to October, but they are certainly good enough to advance.
And with still a month and a half to go on the regular season, the Blue Jays still have time to mount a comeback.
Right now, the standings have the Tampa Bay Rays at the top with a 69-44 record.
The Boston Red Sox remain in second place even though they have been struggling badly in the second half.
They have a 65-50 record, five games behind the Rays.
The Yankees are 62-51, seven games behind the Rays but just two out from their arch-rivals.
Toronto is only half a game behind the Yankees, and 7.5 out of the Rays.
FanGraphs has the Jays’ postseason odds at 46.9 percent.
The Rays are at 87.4 percent, the Red Sox at 67.1 percent, and the Yankees at 46.8 percent.
#BlueJays gained half a game in the wild card race yesterday. Their playoff odds are essentially equal to that of the Yankees, per Fangraphs.
— Jenn Smith (@Baseball_Jenn) August 11, 2021
While the Rays are way ahead of the Blue Jays, the division is still a possibility, albeit a remote one.
For Toronto, the focus should be playing every game like it’s the last and focusing on one of the Wild Card spots.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the Oakland Athletics hold the first Wild Card spot at 65-48.
The Red Sox, owners of the second spot, are a game behind the A’s.
The Yankees are two games behind the Red Sox and the Blue Jays are just 2.5 games behind.
It’s certainly possible that the Jays jump both of their division rivals in the standings if they perform well in the last month and a half.
They Have The Talent And Depth To Make Noise
They certainly have the human resources to mount a serious playoff charge.
The Blue Jays’ offense is top-notch: they are currently second in runs per game, with 5.2.
Additionally, they are second in hits per game, with 8.9.
They have perhaps the best pure hitter in MLB in Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who is slashing .314/.408/.625 with 35 homers.
Behind their offensive leader, the Jays have an army of talented hitters that together form the scariest lineup in the league.
Marcus Semien, Bo Bichette, Teoscar Hernandez, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., George Springer, Randal Grichuk, Alejandro Kirk/Reese McGuire, and Corey Dickerson are all very talented hitters, ready to display their worth in the playoffs.
They have to get there first, but they will surely try.
The pitching staff was good, but not great before the deadline, and now they added starter Jose Berrios and relievers Brad Hand and Joakim Soria.
Staff ace Hyun-Jin Ryu, sensational rookie Alek Manoah, Steven Matz, and the much-improved Robbie Ray (2.90 ERA in 130.1 innings) complete the rotation, now a very competent one.
I hope the @BlueJays can keep their pace and make a serious push for the playoffs this season. After a rocky start with a questionable bullpen and having to play every game on the road, they made trades, came home, and have been killing it ever since. Let's go! #WeAreBlueJays
— McOilers 🍁 (@McOilers) August 11, 2021
With such a talented group of players, the Blue Jays can certainly jump their rivals in the standings and find their way to the playoffs.NEXT: 3 Reasons Why Blue Jays Remain In Contention For A Playoff Spot