Tonight marks the beginning of Interleague play.
For those of you who have read this site before, you should already know my feelings on Interleague play. For those of you new to the site, let me explain:
I HATE Interleague play.
It dilutes the All-Star game. It ruins the majesty and tradition of the World Series.
And the Blue Jays suck at it, which also doesn’t help.
But if there is one thing I DO like about Interleague play, it’s the fact that we get to see some of the best players in baseball come to Toronto. Players who otherwise would never step foot inside the dome. I’m talking about the Barry Bonds’, Albert Pujols’, and Troy Tulowitzki’s of the world. So despite Toronto’s all-time record of futility in these games, I can find it in my heart to get a little bit excited once Interleague play rolls around each year.
And tonight, the Jays welcome the powerful and incredible….Houston Astros?
Seriously – is there anything to get excited about here?
The Blue Jays and Astros have played a grand total of 3 games against each other. Three. Ever.
Those three games took place in June of 2005, in Houston (the Astros have never played in Toronto until tonight). Toronto was swept by an Astros team that would advance to the World Series that year.
That Astros club was full of great players. Craig Biggio, 37-year old Jeff Bagwell, and Lance Berkman, and had a killer starting rotation lead by Roy Oswalt, Roger Clemens, and Andy Pettitte. A dominant Brad Lidge anchored the bullpen.
However, this is not 2005.
This season the Houston Astros are 15 – 29, dead last in the NL Central, and have the worst winning percentage in the majors. They have lost five straight games. They are a dismal 6 – 16 on the road. They have allowed 228 runs, the worst in baseball.
And nobody on the team excites me.
Hunter Pence? Yeah, he’s pretty good, but not somebody I’d buy a ticket to see. Carlos Lee used to be good. Same with Brett Myers. Somebody named Humberto Quintero is the starting catcher.
If you want to head to the games to see former Blue Jays, you’re out of luck too. Houston has two of them, but neither are active. Closer Brandon Lyon is having a terrible year, and is now on the DL. Utility man Joe Inglett is hitting .222 and was recently sent back to the minor leagues.
The only real player that people will care about is Brett Wallace, the former Blue Jays prospect who was dealt at the trade deadline last year. Wallace is having himself a nice season, with a .303 average, .823 OPS, and 3 HR. But I don’t really care, and I don’t want to see him in person because I know EXACTLY what is going to happen.
He is going to have a good series. He will hit a home run or two, have a multi-hit game or two, and that will set Jays fans off on a Twitter rampage. There will be tweets saying that Toronto never should have traded him, that it was stupid move, that he would look great at first base here. There will be people bad-mouthing Alex Anthopoulos, saying that Anthony Gose is a bust, saying “I told you so.”
It will be terrible.
But of course I will still go to the dome.
I already have tickets for tomorrow afternoon, section 107.
See you there.