BY: John Mamola
As the first milestone marker of every Major League Baseball season has passed with the Memorial Day weekend already faded away, the Tampa Bay Rays find themselves in unfamiliar territory being seven games back of the division leading Toronto Blue Jays. This isn’t the Blue Jays team of last year which spent a record amount bringing in proven veterans only to find most of them missing significant time on the disabled list due to a multitude of injuries.
Former Rays pitcher and current TSN analyst Dirk Hayhurst joined WDAE’s ‘The Sports Page’ on Tuesday morning and spoke about the astounding rise of Toronto this early in the season.
“I think that this Blue Jays club hasn’t so much figured out what it was missing last year, is it’s just healthier this year,” said Hayhurst. “There was a lot of injuries, really the team was decimated by injuries. Just the fact that they’re healthy while so much of the league around them is unhealthy has given them a major boost.”
The former Rays reliever believes the Blue Jays aren’t necessarily doing anything different this year, just that they’ve managed to stay the healthiest team in the American League East. Hayhurst believes that the Blue Jays in first place this early into the season is not a fluke, and says that he expects Toronto to be a major player in the division race come October.
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