The Toronto Blue Jays have the distinction of being the first, and most likely being the only Canadian team to ever win baseball's most coveted prize: the World Series championship.
Originally founded in 1977, the Toronto Blue Jays struggled like most expansion teams, taking seven full seasons to record their first .500+ winning percentage. Yet from there on out (1983) the Jays had at least a .500 winning percentage in every season up until the strike shortened 1994 campaign.
During this stretch of success the Jays battled their way to three playoff appearances; in 1985, 1989 & 1991. Unfortunately, they fell short of reaching the finals in all three occasions. The year 1992 would be different.
Before getting into the actual series' themselves, we'd have to be crazy to skip over the players themselves. The names on the rosters read like a who's who for the late eighties and early nineties. Everyone on this list played for the Jays during 1992 & 1993 and has made at least one all-star team during their career.
And let’s not forget these Hall of Famers
Unreal... talk about some talent! One has to question how they only won 96 games in 1992 and 95 in 1993.
Although these teams were loaded, their path to the World Series titles certainly wasn’t easy in either season.
The World Series wasn’t much easier that year, as it took six games and one of the all-time post-season meltdowns by Mark Wohlers to bring the title north of the boarder.
In 1993 the Bluebirds moved past the Chicago White Sox in six games and took on the Philadelphia Phillies in the series. This set the stage for one of the biggest all-time home runs and undoubtedly the most important event in the history of Canadian baseball in the FIX of Joe Carter’s ninth inning, game winning home run off of reliever Mitch Williams.
Since 1993 the Jays have failed to make the playoffs. Hope exists heading into the 2008 season, where the Jays feature one of the top overall pitching staffs in baseball, both in the rotation and the bullpen. If they can find consistency from both the offensive and defensive side of the diamond, the Jays should be able to push the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees for the AL East Division title or at worst the American League Wild Card. And as teams in the past few seasons have proven just getting into the playoffs gives each team a great chance at capturing a World Series title.
K-Man writes for the website Mop Up Duty, which features a slew of Toronto Blue Jays News & Analysis. Head over to <a href="http://mopupduty.com/index.php/category/blue-jays/">Toronto Blue Jays @ Mop Up Duty</a> Or the main site at http://www.mopupduty.com