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Everything is going wrong for 2024 Blue Jays


TORONTO — Sometimes, it’s just not your year.

In the midst of just about everything going wrong, it’s looking like 2024 could be simply one of those years for the Toronto Blue Jays.

Losers of six straight as they watch their highest-paid player put up the league’s lowest qualified OPS, things took another negative turn Sunday when prospect Orelvis Martinez was suspended 80 games for violating MLB’s performance-enhancing drugs policy.

The league’s announcement came less than 48 hours after Martinez, the club’s top hitting prospect and No. 2 overall in the system behind Ricky Tiedemann, made the first appearance of his career in Cleveland.

It matters little that Martinez claims the failed test was thanks to a fertility drug (this has been used before, most famously by Manny Ramirez).

What matters is one of the club’s prized prospects will sit idle until Sept. 23 as the latest negative storyline in a season that has already produced a ton
of them for the Blue Jays.

It started in the winter with the failed chase of Shohei Ohtani.

From there, a shockingly inactive off-season took hold, as Jays decision-makers and GM Ross Atkins doubled down on the core that was in place, internal improvements, and coaching staff shuffles that were supposed to provide the fix.

Once spring training started, it’s been a long list of poor performances and injuries setting key names back, including Kevin Gausman (shoulder), Jordan Romano (elbow) and now Bo Bichette (calf strain).

The Blue Jays needed a lot of things to go right this season, and almost everything has gone wrong.


Instead of being a quiet MVP candidate, he’s suffering through the worst season of his career with a stunning .629 OPS, and now he’s on the IL.


The ace has a 4.24 ERA and has not looked anywhere near as dominant as his first two seasons in a Jays uniform when he was a clear Cy Young candidate.


A 6.59 ERA is all you need to know, and a pair of elbow setbacks help tell that story.

How about key setup man Erik Swanson

Well, his ERA is 11.57 … in Triple-A. His MLB mark is better … at 9.22.

At least Yimi Garcia is around? 

He’s now on the IL with elbow soreness, too.

How about an Alek Manoah resurgence? 

That’s out the window for the next calendar year after elbow surgery.

Then there’s key off-season signings Justin Turner and Kevin Kiermaier, who are currently showing off .712 and .520 OPS marks, respectively.

Which brings us to George Springer, the club’s highest-paid player, and his $25 million AAV with two more years to go after this one.

Not only has the 34-year-old veteran struggled this season, but Springer looks like a shell of his former self at the plate, something that has been going on for almost a calendar year now.

His .191 batting average and .566 OPS are ugly, but when you go back to the start of last July, Springer’s slash line is .219/.303/.338 with just 14 home runs across 620 trips to the plate.

The power that made Springer such a lethal leadoff man has completely disappeared, with little reason to believe it’s suddenly going to reappear.

All of this has conspired to leave the Jays in a tricky position both in the short-term leading into the July 30 trade deadline, as well as down the road over the next 18 months with Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. approaching free agency at the end of next season.

“Extremely disappointed and surprised,” Atkins told reporters in Cleveland when describing the Martinez suspension.

It could easily double as a description of how 2024 has played out thus far for the entire Blue Jays organization.