Firstly, the Jays are owned by Rogers Communications, a multi-billion dollar communications giant that monopolizes the Canadian telecom and media industry. Secondly, Toronto is the 4th largest city in North America, behind only New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Thirdly, if you win, the fans will come. When the Jays were a perennial contender in the mid 80's to early 90's the Jays twice set attendance records by drawing over four million fans. Not only have the Jays not been to the postseason since their second consecutive World Series title in 1993, they have not even played a meaningful game in September (probably not even August mind you).
Toronto baseball fans are extremely passionate, as anyone who listens to local sports radio can attest to. But having next to no chance to compete every year is draining to a fan base that now has two other major pro sports teams to follow, not to mention a soccer team and Lacrosse team to challenge for the entertainment dollar.
The Jays are headed in the right direction. Alex Anthopolous is a sharp and witty young man with a great baseball mind, in the mold of Theo Epstein. He has made his vision clear, and that is to build this team into a 95+ win team, which is what is needed to contend in the A.L. East.
The Jays have huge, young talent in Aaron Hill, Adam Lind, and Travis Snider on offense, along with Brett Wallace and JP Arencibia, and an extremely deep core of young starting pitchers in Marcum, McGowan, Romero, Cecil, Rzepcinski, Drabek, Morrow, Litsch, and on and on and on to build around.
I believe this year is one in which evaluation will be the key goal, and as early as 2011 you could see a few impact free agents hop on board to make this team a playoff contender right away.
As a Blue Jays fan for 30 plus years I believe I speak for all Jays fans when I say: SPEND AWAY IN 2011-12 and lets give the Yanks and Sox a real run for their money.
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