Misguided gambling enthusiasts anger me.

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Misguided gambling enthusiasts anger me.
Over on Covers.com Jon Kuiperij wrote up a breakdown of the clusterfuck to the AL East title. Examining just how much of a shot the teams that aren't the Orioles have at taking the crown this year.

Of course he shits on the Jays giving them 3000 to 1 odds for winning the division, something that I take offense to. The lovely analysis that I'm about to rip apart reads:

Toronto Blue Jays (+3000)

Why they'll win: They're due. The Blue Jays haven't made the playoffs since winning back-to-back World Series in 1992 and '93. The pitching staff is anchored by arguably the best in baseball, Roy Halladay (10-1, 2.53 ERA). MLB');">Scott Rolen has surprised with a .329 batting average, while the production of Adam Lind and Aaron Hill (48 RBI each) has also exceeded expectations.

Why they won't: Beyond Halladay, the rotation is made up of smoke and mirrors, and that can only work for so long. Second half of schedule is much tougher, with 18 games against Tampa Bay, 15 against the Yankees and 12 against Boston. Jays are a combined 3-6 against those opponents this year. This team lacks a true lead-off man, a legitimate cleanup hitter and a reliable closer.

While it's tough to argue with the reasons why they'll win the division, it's pretty easy to rip apart the reasons why they won't.

1) Smoke and mirrors rotation: What's to say it won't work, the pitching hasn't been the cause of the recent struggles, it's been the bats falling silent every now and then. This team has been getting great performances from their starting pitching. Hell it's not even that patchwork. Brian Tallet has made 14 starts this season, just like Roy Halladay. Scott Richmond is next with 11 starts. That seems to leave 2 smoke and mirror spots, creating a healthy competition for starting work among the "interns". One of the two question marks fades more when you look at Ricky Romero who has proven himself to be a legitimate major leaguer over 9 starts going 4-3 with a 3.59 ERA.

2) Tougher second half schedule: having to play a full season doesn't really seem like it can effect a team, anything can happen any day.

3) No lead-off man: You're fucking serious? Marco Scutaro is a machine, .299 Avg, .397 OBP, .895 OPS, 48 BB, and 54 R and another 31 RBI. He leads the league in runs scored. His numbers are better than Pedoia, Jeter and Upton - all the other leadoff hitters for AL East contenders, in all of those categories except for Avg, where he's hitting a whole 2 points lower than Derek Jeter's .301.

4) Lack of a legitimate clean-up hitter: Scott Rolen is currently batting clean-up for the Toronto Blue Jays, and has been since June 15th, you just praised him 4 sentences previously. He's the greatest Blue Jay of all time.

5) Lack of a reliable closer: Even though he's temporarily on the DL, Scott Downs has the makings of a kickass and reliable closer, 1.98 ERA, and has 1 blown save in his first 9 chances. Not too bad for a guy with 15 career saves. When Downs returns look for him to really shine.

Next time you want to write about the Blue Jays in a post maybe you should actually think about what you're saying instead of just throwing them into your post, especially if you're telling people to gamble on it.

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