The Toronto Blue Jays became an organization in 1977. They have two World Series titles from back-to-back years in 1992 and 1993. Including number 42, the club has three retired numbers.
Here is an all-time starting lineup for the Toronto Blue Jays.
1. Roberto Alomar, Second Base (1991-1995)
Hall of Fame Inductee in 2011
Uniform Number 12 Retired by the Blue Jays in 2011
Roberto Alomar played on seven MLB teams in his career, and his five seasons with Toronto is his most of any team. He was there for both World Series titles in 1992 and 1993. Alomar is the MVP of the 1992 ALCS, where he slashed .423/.464/.692 in 28 plate appearances. In the 1993 World Series, Alomar made contributions at the plate by having 12 hits in six games, as well as having six RBIs and five runs scored. Alomar won a Gold Glove award in all five seasons with the Blue Jays, and he had a career slash line of .307/.382/.451 with the club.
2. Josh Donaldson, Third Base (2015-2018)
Although Josh Donaldson‘s stint with the Blue Jays isn’t as long as some of the other guys on this list, he still provided much offense and defense in his time there. He won American League MVP in his first season with Toronto in 2015. That season, he slashed .297/.371/.568. Donaldson led the MLB in runs scored (122) that year, and led the American League in both RBIs (123) and extra-base hits (84). The third basemen played in the Postseason in 2015 and 2016 with Toronto, collecting 25 hits in 20 games.
3. Carlos Delgado, First Base (1993-2004)
In 6,018 regular season plate appearances with the Blue Jays, Carlos Delgado had a .949 OPS, 336 home runs and 1,048 RBIs. He posted a single-season high OPS in 2000 when it was 1.134. The first basemen was third in the MLB for offensive WAR (8.1) and led the American league in doubles (57) and total bases (378) that year. In 2003, he was the runner-up for AL MVP behind Alex Rodriguez. That season, Delgado slashed .302/.426/.593 with 81 extra-base hits and 145 RBIs.
4. Jose Bautista, Right Field (2008-2017)
Jose Bautista is a six time All-Star, three time Silver Slugger and a top 10 finisher for AL MVP four times. He achieved all of these accolades with the Blue Jays. Bautista had a slugging percentage of .506 in his time with Toronto, which is 31 points higher than his career slugging percentage of .475. All of his Postseason appearances were with Toronto as well. In his playoff career, he slashed .243/.364/.541. One of the biggest moments in Blue Jays history happened in the 2015 Postseason when Jose Bautista crushed a dramatic go-ahead three-run homer in game five of the ALDS against the Rangers.
5. Edwin Encarnacion, Designated Hitter (2009-2016)
In eight years with the Blue Jays, Edwin Encarnacion totaled 999 regular season games. In those contests, he hit 239 home runs, 202 two-baggers and had 679 RBIs. Like Bautista, Encarnacion was a member of the back-to-back ALCS teams in 2015 and 2016. In 20 playoff games with Toronto, he had 21 hits including seven for extra-bases. He had a big series in the 2016 ALDS when they swept the Rangers. Encarnacion slashed .417/.500/.917 in that series.
6. George Bell, Left Field (1981, 1983-1990)
George Bell did not play in the majors in 1982 after debuting with Toronto in 1981. He played 60 games that season and just 39 games in 1983. Then in his final seven seasons with the Blue Jays, he played in at least 142 games each season. One of his best seasons came in 1987 when he won AL MVP. That year, Bell had 134 RBIs, 111 runs scored and 83 extra-base hits. In his regular season career with Toronto, he hit 202 round-trippers, 237 doubles and had 740 RBIs.
7. Vernon Wells, Center Field (1999-2010)
Vernon Wells had a somewhat slow start to his MLB career. In 2003, which was his fifth big league season, he made his first All-Star game and finished eighth in the AL MVP voting. Wells led the MLB in hits (215), and led the American League in plate appearances (735) and total bases (373) that season. He obtained some defensive accolades the following years as he won a Gold Glove each year from 2004-2006. Wells slashed .280/.329/.475 in 1,393 regular season games with Toronto.
8. Tony Fernandez, Shortstop (1983-1990, 1998-1999, 2001)
Tony Fernandez played 12 seasons with the Blue Jays throughout his 17 year career. He leads the organization in hits with 1,583 as part of 2,276 for his career. Fernandez slashed .297/.353/.412 in 5,900 plate appearances with the Blue Jays. The shortstop made four All-Star games and won four Gold Glove awards with the club. Fernandez is also a World Series winner. He was with the team when they beat the Phillies in the 1993 Fall Classic. Fernandez recorded seven hits and nine RBIs in the series.
9. Ernie Whitt, Catcher (1977-1989)
Ernie Whitt played in at least 105 games with the Blue Jays for nine of the 12 seasons he spent with the team. He made one All-Star game in 1985 when he slashed .245/.323/.444. Whitt hit 19 home runs that year, which is tied for his single-season best. A few seasons later in 1987, Whitt had a career high 75 RBIs and 120 hits along with 24 doubles which is tied for his single-season high.
Starting Pitcher- Roy Halladay (1998-2009)
Hall of Fame Inductee in 2019
Uniform Number 32 Retired by the Blue Jays in 2018
Roy Halladay pitched in 416 regular season games with the Blue Jays with 390 of them being starts. He finished in the top five of the AL Cy Young voting five times with Toronto, winning it once there and then one time with the Phillies. “Doc” pitched 49 complete games with 15 being shutouts with Canada’s baseball team. He reached nine complete games in three of his 12 seasons with the Jays. He provided a 3.43 ERA and 2,117 strikeouts 2,749 1/3 innings pitched for Toronto.
Bullpen Pitcher- Tom Henke (1985-1992)
Tom Henke leads the Blue Jays in multiple pitching categories among qualified players. Some of them include ERA (2.48), WHIP (1.025) and saves (217). In his debut season with Toronto, Henke posted a 2.03 ERA in 40 innings pitched. Two years later in 1987 he made his first All-Star game in a season where he pitched a single-season high 94 innings and posted a 2.49 ERA with 128 punch outs. Henke was also a member of the 1992 World Series winning team. In 19 2/3 career Postseason innings, Henke posted a 1.83 ERA.
Feature Image Courtesy of TSN.