The Toronto Blue Jays are confident they will be able to make the playoffs despite the possibility of being temporarily excluded from the playoff picture if they lose another loss to the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday.
The Blue Jays are 2-8 in their last 10 games and have lost to the Orioles twice in a row, allowing Baltimore to come within half a game of Toronto for third and final place in teams drafted into the American League.
« You just have to have faith in yourself, » Jays star Vladimir Guerrero Jr. said after the team’s 4-2 loss Tuesday, its third straight loss. “I told the guys to keep trusting each other and keep working hard. The wind will turn one way or another. »
Toronto’s starting pitching staff struggled throughout August and all-star Alek Manoah was credited with his second straight loss after allowing all four runs in 5 2/3 innings of work on Tuesday. The 24-year-old right-hander is 12-6 with a 2.71 ERA, which ranks him 10th in Major League Baseball.
« We’re still in the playoff picture, and we know we’re a playoff team, » Manoah said. “We’re having a little trouble right now, but we’ll get back on track. »
After enjoying immediate success under interim coach John Schneider following the firing of Charlie Montoyo last month, the Jays are now 15-12 since that change. The team was 46-42 under Montoyo.
« It’s a close-knit and very talented group, » assured Schneider. “We have no doubt that we’re going to be playing better baseball very soon. »
Heading into Wednesday’s game, the Blue Jays were 10 games behind the New York Yankees, who sit in first place in the American League East Division. In the fight for a draft spot, Toronto is two and a half games behind the Seattle Mariners and is one game behind the Tampa Bay Rays for second place. In addition to the Orioles, who are just half a game behind the Jays, the Minnesota Twins and Chicago White Sox are also one game away from Toronto for the third and final American League draft spot.