Well, that's that. Another season, come and gone.
It's hard for us to know what to make of the 2008 season at this point. We spent so long holding out hope this year that we've barely had time to really figure out whether if we think this is a good season or a disappointment. At this point, it kinda feels like a bit of both.
In the end, the Jays win 86 games (yay!) and are 10 games over .500 for the season (hooray!), and they play 14 games over .500 under Cito Gaston (woohoo!).
But then again, they end up fourth in the AL East, which will certainly provide almsot endless fodder for the superficial and superior media gasbags in Toronto over the winter. If someone deserves to be pilloried in the media about this year's performance, then fine...but it sticks in our craw that media types who could give a shit about baseball and are too lazy to examine the context are going to toss off pejoratives like "failure" or "mediocre" in passing, as they hurry through their non-analysis to talk at legnth about some fourth-line Maple Leaf.
Nevermind that the AL East is in the toughest division in baseball, and one which will only become tougher next year. The Jays ended the season 37-35 against their own division, while the potential AL Central champs made hay by beating up on the Royals, Tigers and to a lesser extent, the Indians. The White Sox sit at 42-29 within their division before today's final game against Detroit, while the Twins racked up a 43-29 mark.
We'll probably hear lots about the incomparable job done by those two franchises to remain competitive and make the playoffs, even if all that collected acumen led them to two more wins than the Jays.
Moreover, against the AL East, those two models of excellence in franchise building got their asses handed to them. The Twins ended up 13-22, while the White Sox were 15-26.
Our kingdom for a balanced schedule.
Turning the page, Part II
Breaking news: Paul Godfrey is leaving the Jays. It's probably the worst kept secret of the year that he was on his way out after the season...Hell, we figured it out, and we don't have any of this new-fangled "access" that we keep hearing about.
We still think that Godfrey is a wannabe Republican kitten-eater, but give the man his due: he saw attendance increase by about three-quarters of a million patrons per season over his tenure. There's something to be said about that.
Meanwhile, the nostalgic hacks in Toronto already have Paul Beeston stepping in to take over.