The Season From Hell
The Toronto Blue Jays played their final game of the 2004 season yesterday, losing 3-2 to the New York Yankees. Good riddance to bad garbage. The 2004 season was the season from hell for my Blue Jays. I've been following this team closely since 1983 and no other season comes close to matching this one in terms of pure crapola.
First there's the record. The Blue Jays finished 67-94. That's good for last in the American League East, 33.5 games out of first. Prior to this season, I predicted we'd finish third again as we had each of the previous five seasons. It seems I set the bar too high and we actually fell to the basement. 67 wins is horrible and finishing beneath the Devil Rays in the East is sickening.
Secondly, there's the injuries. Our ace and last year's Cy Young award winner, Roy Halladay, was shelved for much of the season while Vernon Wells and Carlos Delgado, the heart and soul of the offense, were on the DL for extended periods of time.
Thirdly, there's Carlos Delgado and his imminent farewell. I watched the ninth inning of yesterday's final game and saw Delgado in the on-deck circle when Wells flew out to end the game. I was hoping for one last at-bat, one final swing from Delgado in a Blue Jays uniform. It's a virtual certainty that he'll sign with another club this off season. We've seen the last of this awesome batter and all-around good guy. He leaves us as the franchise leader in home runs with 336, RBIs with 1058, runs with 889, doubles with 343 and total bases with 2786. It seems that every time I attended a game at Skydome he'd hit one over the wall. I'm glad James had a chance to see #25 while he was here. He even went deep.
Finally, there are the tragic events that plagued this Blue Jay season that cemented it's status as the season from hell. Tom Cheek battled a malignant brain tumour and had to miss a great deal of the season. Cheek has always been the real voice of the Blue Jays. Then, just yesterday, John Cerutti passed away at the Skydome hotel. A healthy 44 year-old who was scheduled to analyze the season finale for Sportsnet, Cerutti's death was quite the shocker and a tragic end to the Blue Jays' season from hell.
The one bright spot is the fact the 2004 season from hell is finally over. Go Jays Go in 2005!
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