The 2012 season ended with a lot of "what if's" and a hope for contending in 2013; what if Brandon Morrow would have remained healthy? What if Jose Bautista wouldn't have injured his wrist in NY? 2012 was a year of injuries, 3 starting pitchers in one week, etc. However, despite finishing at 73-89, the fan base was exited to see what this team could do when healthy. After all, we were right there before June's injury parade.
Then came all the off-season acquisitions, and many predicted the Blue Jays to be contenders again, 20 years after the last WS win. I didn't think AA had the guts to pull these kind of trades, and although at the time I didn't agreed at all with the RA trade, I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt because he took a chance, and because the Blue Jays were once again the talk of the baseball universe, and that was fine by me.
As the awful 2013 season continues is horrific grind to the end, the Blue Jays have taken a monumental step back while adding $44+ million to its 2012 $83,739,200 payroll. While we can talk about some bright spots, like the bullpen's first half, the emergence of Esmil Rogers and Todd Redmond as legit starters, Neil Wagner being infinite better that Santos, the resurgence of Cecil's speed and effectiveness out of the bullpen, Delabar's outstanding K ratio, the Kawasaki chant, or EE cementing himself as one of the league's best hitter, it is fair to say that the 2013 Blue Jays have been horrible.
And yet attendance at Rogers Centre has passed the 2 million mark for the first time since 1997. Almost goes to show that getting stars puts more fans in the seats than a winning record.
GM's have egos, like all ball players, and like all players, GM's are also measured by the team's performance. So, if you were to gamble like AA did last off season, wouldn't you become gun-shy after all the trades blow up in your face? Everyone is looking at the man responsible for bringing together a $127,777,800 roster that by all accounts has under-performed.
Having said all that, what do you think? How will our GM react this off-season? Is his confidence in his own GM abilities shattered? If you were the owner, what would you do with AA? Is 2014 a do or die year for AA?