Roy Halladay is the best pitcher in baseball.
The common American baseball fan may not agree with this statement, and therefore, they prefer to support flashier names like Johan Santana, Tim Lincecum, and CC Sabathia.
The reason for this ignorance is none other than the lack of coverage of the Toronto Blue Jays south of the border. For years, many Toronto players have not received the exposure and credit that's proportional to their baseball accomplishments.
During this current season, Blue Jay fans are witnessing breakout performances from great young players such as Aaron Hill, Adam Lind, and Ricky Romero, but none of those players are recognizable to the average baseball fan.
I am convinced that if these three players walked the streets of downtown Los Angeles for two hours, no one would recognize them.
Halladay has had to endure that treatment for over a decade, but don’t be fooled, because it doesn’t bother him one bit. He is a modest and humble individual who prepares for outings vigorously. He just goes out and takes care of business.
Unlike many athletes, Halladay spends his spare time pursuing mature interests. Halladay has nurtured a loving family and has dedicated time and money to his own organization that helps sick and underprivileged children.
He has never demanded the limelight or the respect of his surrounding peers. All that has mattered to Halladay since day one is winning a World Series with the Toronto Blue Jays.
His relationship with the organization is a strong one, as he realizes that, without the Blue Jays' front office's time and patience, he would not be the best pitcher in the game.
After setting the MLB record for highest ERA in a single season (it was over 10), Halladay was demoted to A-ball and worked his way back with the help of former pitching coach Mel Queen, who implemented a totally new approach and mindset for Halladay.
The final results have been breathtaking and mesmerizing, as Halladay has become the best and most consistent pitcher of our young generation. So many times in professional sports, stories arise regarding a franchise putting time into developing a player, and once they finally become the breakout stars they wanted to be, they bolt town for money elsewhere.
In Toronto, names like Al Leiter and Tracy McGrady totally back up this argument, but Halladay was determined to avoid that negative perception. He worked hard, won games, won a Cy Young Award, and even took a bit of a hometown discount when re-signing with the Blue Jays a few years back. He would have easily made more money on the open market.
Now, Roy Halladay is finally front and center on all American sports outlets, due to his availability on the trade block.
He loves Toronto, and would prefer to stay and win a championship here, but he and Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi both know that most likely won’t happen anytime soon.
With all due respect to the city of Toronto, their baseball team, and their fans, Halladay would like to move on to a contender where he can win a World Series. At this point in time, I can’t see the Jays denying his wish.
With so many teams in contention for the playoffs this season, GMs across baseball know Halladay can be that one-punch ticket to October glory.
Here’s hoping the Jays receive that great young package of prospects they are seeking for their ace so that Roy Halladay can go out and win a championship. Not only does he deserve it for being the best at his craft, but also for being a great human being.
In the society we live in these days, these accomplishments can’t be overlooked.