Have you seen this? Have you heard about this? The Toronto Blue Jays are striking out too often. They’re up there just swinging away, chasing crap. They just set a franchise record for the most strikeouts through the first seven games of a season with 72. And another with 84 through the first eight. Enough already with trying to hit a home run on every swing. Why don’t you shorten up a little, go the other way? This ain’t good baseball.
Thing is, this is baseball. Through Sunday’s play, a quarter — 24.7 per cent, to be precise — of MLB plate appearances this season have resulted in a strikeout. And with a 25.9 per cent strikeout rate through nine games, the Blue Jays aren’t even among MLB’s 10 worst clubs in the category. It may feel like the Blue Jays are striking out a lot. But you can’t ignore that everyone is striking out a lot.
Teams with post-season aspirations off to better starts than the Blue Jays, such as the Milwaukee Brewers (27.8 per cent), Philadelphia Phillies (27.3), and Minnesota Twins (26.7), are striking out more often. The Cincinnati Reds, off to a great start with a 6-3 record and an MLB-best 66 runs scored, have a 13 per cent swinging strike rate. Meanwhile, the Blue Jays sit 10th in baseball at 12.6.