One under-the-radar purpose is that the Blue Jays offense does not really feel as dynamic

Should you have been so inclined, you possibly can argue that the 2022 Toronto Blue Jays have hit higher than their 2021 counterparts.

Though their total output is down from final yr, their wRC+ is a team-high 115 from final yr (112) – indicating that they’ve been higher within the context of the league’s offensive setting. Hitters across the majors aren’t performing on the stage they did final yr, and the Blue Jays are doing fairly nicely in comparison with their friends.

Which may be the literal fact, however for anybody who has watched the Blue Jays this yr, it simply does not really feel proper. Toronto’s offense hasn’t regarded as dynamic because it did final season, which is one purpose why the membership’s brutal efficiency on the facilities.

Whereas this Blue Jays workforce has by no means been a gaggle of hitters, final yr they created worth on the bottom paths. In 2022 that was not the case.

Based on the BsR FanGraphs metric the Blue Jays are at the moment the twenty eighth greatest run workforce within the majors (-9.9 runs). Final season they have been thirteenth (+2.8).

The obvious option to accumulate base working worth is by stealing bases, which is an space the place the workforce has struggled this season.

A few of this may be defined by personnel adjustments, because the departure of Marcus Semien – who went 15-for-16 on stolen base makes an attempt – damage these numbers. That mentioned, most of the similar gamers simply aren’t having the identical success.

The obvious instance of that development is Bo Bichette who went 25-for-26 in 2021 earlier than a 9-for-17 efficiency to date this season. He isn’t alone, nonetheless. Teoscar Hernandez went 12-for-16 in 2021 and sits at 6-for-9. Santiago Espinal is 5-for-9 after going 6-for-7 final yr.

Though stolen base statistics come from small samples and have a tendency to fluctuate broadly, it’s clear that a number of Blue Jays have seen their Dash Velocity ​​​​numbers enhance. decline this season.

The chart under exhibits all of the place gamers at the moment on the roster who performed with the workforce in 2021 and the way their Dash Velocity ​​​​share has modified yr over yr:

Dash velocity percentile 2021

Dash velocity percentile 2022

As guys get slightly older it is smart that this metric would go down a bit, therefore what we’re seeing with Springer – who’s having his best base stealing season to this point – Hernandez and Biggio do not care. The development of barely much less velocity throughout the board is rising, nonetheless.

Bichette and Espinal are a distinct story. This drop in uncooked velocity actually helps clarify how the pair went from a 93.9 % success charge stealing bases to only 53.8 % in 2022. The true expertise appears they nonetheless have higher than the final quantity suggests, however the best way they’re working now. 2021 outcomes will not be reproducible.

The drop in uncooked velocity exhibits up past simply stolen bases, too. Baseball-Reference retains an ‘additional base taken share’ statistic to measure how typically a participant goes from first to 3rd on a single, first to residence on a double or second to residence on a single. .

Based on that metric (XBT), Bichette and Espinal have each declined in 2022:

This pair shouldn’t be solely chargeable for the decline of the Blue Jays’ velocity component, however they play a disproportionate function.

Whereas the Blue Jays aren’t going to sink or swim simply on their base working, final yr they have been going to generate good worth with their legs. It was a small factor of their success, however removed from small.

This yr the necessary, if small, power has changed into a weak point. The addition of Whit Merrifield might present a option to restore this workforce’s foundational success, however it looks as if a small a part of what made the 2021 Blue Jays so highly effective has been misplaced.

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