Doctober: This Toronto Fan’s Perspective

7 10 2010

Posted by WAMCO:

“Bittersweet.”

Amongst many Blue Jays blogs and websites and comments, this is the word I am consistently seeing with regards to Roy Halladay’s 104-pitch no-hit masterpiece in his playoff debut. If you told me five years ago that he would have this type of performance in his first playoff game, I would have believed you. However, there are some things that would have seemed strange: He pitches for the Philadelphia Phillies. In the National League division series. Less than one year after he was traded away from Toronto.

“Bittersweet.”

As a lifelong Blue Jay fan, it is difficult to know how to react to a situation like this.

“Bittersweet.”

For many Toronto fans, it is bittersweet to see Doc Halladay succeed with the Phillies, and not their beloved Jays

Roy Halladay is a winner; there is no question about it. Whether he was receiving appropriate run support or not while he pitched for Toronto, he still won games, and still dominated most nights. As a starting pitcher, he has been above 5.0 in WAR seven times in his career. He has lead his league in complete games in six of the past eight years. His other numbers are well known; the dominant ERA, WHIP, etc. Even if you are partial to pitcher wins, he’s had over 16 wins in seven of the past nine years. He is the total package. Add to that his incredible work ethic, his contributions to the community, and his influence on his fellow pitchers, and you pretty much cannot dislike this man, unless you are in the unfortunate position of being in the batter’s box against him.

“Bittersweet.”

The Blue Jays could not put a team together to surpass New York, Boston, or (more recently) Tampa Bay during his time in Toronto. Halladay, on two occasions, signed under-market extensions with the Blue Jays in order to make it work there. The team could not get over the hump. Despite their best efforts, they fell short every year. The man that the late, great Tom Cheek christened as “Doc” Halladay did not pitch in a playoff game for Toronto.

“Bittersweet.”

Toronto fans are torn. Halladay did ask out, in the end. He knew he was running out of time, and needed to make a move. On the other hand, all of the good things Doc did in Toronto will stick with many fans. I know this fan was on the edge of his seat from the sixth inning on last night. I know this fan jumped when the final out was recorded. I know this fan had a tear in his eye. Even though it is too bad it didn’t happen in a Blue Jay uniform, this type of performance couldn’t have been turned in by a better man. Those who saw the game were witnesses to baseball history, Blue Jay fans or otherwise. From where I sit, that is the bottom line.

“Sweet.”

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