Flash back two weeks just prior to Opening Day, and ask Blue Jays fans which of the following would be true after 14 games:
- #2 starter Jesse Litsch is out for a month
- #3 starter David Purcey is sporting a 6.46 ERA
- B.J. Ryan's ERA is a tidy 7.71, and half the batters he's faced have reached base
- Alex Rios is batting .207 with no home runs
- The Jays are 10-4 and first in the division
While these facts don't seem compatible, they are, of course, ALL true. It helps that Marco Scutaro and Aaron Hill are both on pace for 43 home runs, that Ricky Romero is pitching like Roy Halladay Jr., and that Scott Downs looks as though he's never going to allow another run.
Naturally, all early season caveats apply; the schedule's not yet 10% complete, they've yet to play anyone in their division, and none of the teams they have played are expected to contend.
On the other hand, you still have to win the games you do play, and the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays all look vulnerable in the early going.
The Jays' brass has done an excellent job following in the footsteps of other Toronto franchises and laying a goundwork of absolutely no expectations for this season, but the club still finds itself off to its best start since 2001. Genuine excitement should be tempered until that changes to "best start since 1992 or 1993, " but it's been a fun ride so far.