7 Blue Jays with Milestones to Chase in 2024

The Blue Jays front office is confident that Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette will record better numbers in 2024. They called 2023 “a blip”. If they do, there are a few personal milestones they will easily aim for before the season ends. Other pieces of the franchise such as George Springer, Kevin Gausman, Jordan Romano, Chris Bassitt, and the recently acquired Justin Turner will be pursuing round numbers too.

The Core Names of the Franchise Have Personal Marks in Sight

150 HR – 150 2B – 500 RBI

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is only 20 home runs shy of the 150 mark, 17 doubles away from 150, and needs 96 RBIs to reach the 500 threshold (he will be the 12th Jay in doing so). He will also become the eighth Blue Jay who hit 150 home runs or more in the franchise’s history.

Fan Graphs prediction sources expect he will hit over 30 home runs and bring around 100 fellow Blue Jays home while registering 3.0 Wins Above Replacement, one more than in 2023. 

100 HR – 150 2B

Bo Bichette will become the first Blue Jay playing shortstop who hits 100 home runs. He has hit 89 so far and already leads the team in his position all-time. Only five times a shortstop from this franchise has hit 20 or plus dingers, Bichette is accountable for three of them (Troy Tulowitzki and Tony Batista were the other two).

Dante’s son (312) is also on pace to pass Alex Gonzalez (350) as the SS with more runs batted in in the franchise’s history. If he hits 20 more doubles he will total 150. Fan Graphs predicts he will smash 24 home runs and at least 30 doubles in 2024.

1,500 hits

Justin Turner needs 39 hits to collect 1.500 in his 16-year career. If he hit 13 home runs, he will have hit 200 in his journey with the Dodgers, Red Sox, Orioles, Mets, and Blue Jays. Baseball-Reference is optimistic about Turner’s performance in 2024: they say he will hit 19 dingers and bring home 81 colleagues. Other sources predict he will regress and hit only 11 homers and get just 51 runs batted in.

500 hits

George Springer needs 126 hits to reach the 500 mark in a Jays uniform. If he can hit 32 homers, which seems unlikely this season, he will reach the 100 wearing Toronto’s jersey; he only needs eight to get to 250 in his 10-year tenure; Baseball-Reference predicts the 34-year-old outfielder and former Astro will hit 23 dingers. Fan Graphs sources forecast a number that could oscillate between 17 and 27 round-trippers.

3 Seasons with 200 Strikeouts or More

Aside from having the personal goal of reaching 100 wins in sight (he is sitting at 88), Kevin Gausman will become the second starter in Toronto’s history with at least 200 strikeouts in three different campaigns. Roy Halladay is the only one who has done it so far.

Five of six Fan Graphs sources forecast that Gausman will hit the 200-strikeout mark and reach 100 wins this coming season. They expect him to be a 4.0 or more WAR player and lead the rotation again. 

100 saves and 3 seasons with 30+ saves

Jordan Romano will become the fifth closer with 100 saves or more wearing a Blue Jays uniform and could be the one who has done it within the least number of save opportunities.

If Romano keeps his pace – he has recorded 36 saves for two consecutive campaigns – he will also become the second Blue Jays’ closer with three 30-save-plus seasons. Tom Henke is the only Blue Jay with four 30-save seasons. With a little luck, Romano will have a shot at becoming the second closer with a 40-save season; Duane Ward did it in 1993 (45).

According to Fantasy Pros (which pulls data from eight sources that include ESPN, Draft Buddy, Baseball Think Factory, Steamer Blog, Razzball, Derek Carty, and FanGraphs), Romano will save 33 games and be among MLB’s top 10 closers.

1,000 strikeouts

Chris Bassit needs 143 punches to get to this milestone in his career and a few innings to reach the 1.000 innings goal. Fan Graphs expects he will get around 160 K and record a similar number of wins compared to last year when he led the league with 16 victories.

The fact that several Blue Jays players seem to be on track for some individual accomplishments doesn’t mean that the chances of advancing to the postseason are equally positive: Fan Graphs predicts Toronto will only win 84 games and close the regular season in fourth place in the American League East. 

 Main Image: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

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