Rain washes away series finale at Fenway, but dark clouds continue to hover over Blue Jays at mid-season mark

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Following Wednesday night in Boston, when the game between the Blue Jays and Red Sox was suspended in the second inning, the Blue Jays will wait until Friday to reach the official halfway point to a season that has completely gone sideways.

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Back home for the next eight games beginning Thursday when the AL East-leading New York Yankees will be in town, weather won’t be an issue.

In that regard, the Blue Jays can take some solace.

For most of the season, they’ve taken their lumps and have been dealt so many issues, both on and off the field.

It all culminated in Beantown when a loss that should have been a win resulted in the team’s seventh straight defeat, the team’s longest since late 2019.

A win was achieved in the second game of the series when a seven-run inning put the exclamation mark to a lopsided win.

For once, the Jays were able to exhale following successive series losses at Rogers Centre and then in Cleveland.

During the trip, the club learned the news that its No. 1 hitting prospect Orelvis Martinez was handed an 80-game suspension for PED use, the same Martinez who tore up triple-A by hitting 16 homers.

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Even the most delusional fan cannot embrace the glass-is-half-full approach with the Jays about to reach the mid-season point.

Not even the term half-empty would do this season justice.

The team’s top three relievers going into the season in Jordan Romano, Yimi Garcia and Erik Swanson are either on the injured list (in the case of Romano and Garcia) or in the minors (in the case of Swanson.)

The club’s GM has been under the gun, along with the manager and the club’s high-priced and under-achieving outfielder. Too much of a strain has been placed on the starting rotation in the absence of an offence capable of scoring runs and so many losses have compiled, the litany of worries is as long as Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s career-long 471-foot homer he hit over the Green Monster in Tuesday’s win.

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“This game is cruel,’’ said manager John Schneider following a gut-wrenching loss in Monday’s series opener at Fenway Park.

“This game can really beat you up. It can punch you.”

Roster construction has been a hot-button topic from the moment Teoscar Hernandez was dealt to Seattle for Swanson.

Once his power bat left, the Jays have yet to fill the void.

They’ve given up too many homers and hit so few, one of the reasons to help explain why the Jays sit at 36-43 heading into the first of four games versus the Yankees on Thursday.

When they do score runs, pitching gets compromised.

The bullpen is depleted.

George Springer’s first homer in Tuesday’s 9-4 win was a welcome sight.

Vlad Jr. has found his groove at the plate, but he needs help.

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Bo Bichette is back from his 10-day stint on the injured list, but he struck out twice in his return Tuesday and struck out in his first at-bat Wednesday before the game was stopped with one out in the top of the second inning.

The game will be picked up at that point on Aug. 26.

With so much uncertainty surrounding the long-term futures of both Vlad Jr. and Bichette, it remains to be seen whether one or both will be dealt as the clock ticks.

It also remains to be seen whether Ross Atkins will be the one making the call.

Halfway through this season and not much has been gained other than losing more ground in a wild-card chase featuring some bad teams, a characterization that applies to the Blue Jays.

There have been walk-off losses, lopsided losses, close losses and losses where fans completely lost their mind when wondering why managerial decisions were made and why players who seemed to be hitting the ball weren’t in the lineup the following day.

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The season’s nadir arrived in Boston on Monday, a night when the Jays led 6-2 late.

Vlad Jr. was asked post-game what is needed to be extracted from this group.

“Everything, everything, everything,” he said through a club interpreter. “We’ve got to get better at everything right now.

“Winning games. That’s what we need to get better at. Winning games.”

They did win a game to end a horrible streak.

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One can count on one hand the amount of quality wins this group has achieved this season.

A rare run of success came against the likes of the Chicago White Sox and Oakland A’s.

The Jays recorded their first series sweep when they visited Chicago’s South Side.

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They were on the losing end of a sweep, Toronto’s first of the season, when Boston came to town until the Jays left town only to get swept at Progressive Field.

Spencer Horwitz has provided a shot in the arm, but most of these Buffalo call-ups seem to profile as complementary players whose defence is suspect.

More power is needed, more bullpen arms, more wins, a tough climb awaits, if one is even doable.

No one could have envisioned the Jays being in this predicament as they prepare to reach the 81-game point, but here they find themselves, a team with more questions than wins, a team where the future of a handful of individuals, on and off the field, continue to dominate the conversation.

For the 16th time since the schedule expanded to 162 games in 1961, the Yankees reached the halfway point of the season with at least 50 wins.

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However, they have won just one of their past six series.

Entering Wednesday’s series finale in the Subway Series, the Yankees had gone 3-7 in their past 10 games, matching Toronto’s record in its past 10 games.

The Jays, for the record, will resume their game against Boston at 2:05 p.m. on Aug. 26 — at the point in the game it was suspended — as part of a split doubleheader.

When the rain arrived in Boston,  Danny Jansen was at the plate in an 0-1 count with one out and a runner on first in the top of the second inning.

Symbolically speaking, it’s been raining on the Blue Jays for the entire season.

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