Blue Jays playoff baseball returns to Toronto today. Here are 10 things you need to know
October baseball is back in Toronto.
Here are 10 things you need to know before the playoffs begin on Friday afternoon.
The 2022 wild-card format will look a little different than it has in the past. The league scrapped the one-game sudden-death format that had been in place since 2012 and replaced it with a best-of-three series in which all three games are played at the higher seed’s home ball park.
That means there could be games Friday (4:07 p.m.), Saturday (4:07 p.m.) and Sunday (2:07 p.m.), however the Sunday game will only be triggered if the teams split the first two.
“It adds a layer of comfort. You are staying in your own bed, you have your own environment and clubhouse and people you are familiar with and you put that on top of a stadium full of Blue Jays fans it makes it very exciting,” Jays Manager John Schneider said of a potential home filed advantage during a press conference on Thursday. “I think the atmosphere in this building in the postseason speaks for itself. We are excited to be part of that.”
Jays’ starting pitcher for Game 1
All-Star ace Alek Manoah will get the start for the Blue Jays on Friday in his first-ever post-season appearance. The 24-year-old is having a breakout sophomore season in the big leagues, posting a 2.24 ERA and a 16-7 record.
And he’s shown no signs of slowing down, having just been named the American League pitcher of the month for September.
Speaking with reporters at the Rogers Centre on Thursday, he said that he is trying to treat his MLB playoff debut as “just another game” but at the same time appreciates what is at stake.
Rogers Centre is photographed during the Toronto Blue Jays' practice, ahead of the team's wildcard series matchup against the Seattle Mariners in Toronto, Thursday, Oct. 6, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Alex Lupul
“This is what it is all about. You train all off-season, you train all year, you go through the ups and downs and this is what it is all for, the bright lights, post season baseball,” he said. “This is what you dream of as a kid. So for me I am just go to go out there have some fun and play some baseball. I love playing with these guys, we like playing with each other and that is all we have to do, just go play baseball.”
Blue Jays fans who have been missing playoff baseball in Toronto might want to ask a Mariners fan how they feel. Seattle hasn’t qualified for the post-season in 21 years.
During the regular season, the Jays and Mariners played each other seven times. Toronto won the first two but the Mariners bested the Jays four straight times during a series in July.
Blue Jays Manager Charlie Montoy was fired following that series and replaced by Schneider on an interim basis.
“You can kind of take some things from it and leave some things from it,” Schneider said on Thursday when asked about the four-game sweep at the hands of the Mariners. “We are a totally different team than we were then and I think they are different too. Right now I think everyone is just singularly focused on the task at hand and not what happened earlier in the year and we feel good about where we are right now.”
The Jays haven’t officially announced who’ll get the start pitching in games two or three, but the likely order will be Kevin Gausman followed by Ross Stripling. Jose Berrios will be on the roster as well for insurance out of the bullpen.
The Jays’ late-inning arms will be led by closer Jordan Romano and will include Toronto’s only lefty, Tim Mayza, along with mid-season pick-up Anthony Bass.
As for position players, Jays fans can expect to see the usual suspects, including slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and shortstop Bo Bichette.
The Mariners, who have a strong rotation of their own, announced Tuesday that righty Luis Castillo would start in Game 1, followed by former Blue Jay Robbie Ray in Game 2.
Ray won the AL Cy Young award with the Jays last season and Saturday will be his first start in Toronto since leaving the club to join the Mariners in the off-season.
The Mariners’ bullpen had the seventh-best relief ERA in the baseball this year, with veteran closer Paul Sewald leading the way.
Unsurprisingly, all three games are sold out on Ticketmaster as of Thursday.
Across the major leagues today
It’s a jam-packed weekend of baseball, as all four MLB wild-card series will be played on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (if necessary).
The other AL wild-card series between the Cleveland Guardians and the Tampa Bay Rays begins today at 12:07 p.m., officially kicking-off the post-season.
Over in the National League, the St Louis Cardinals face-off against the Philadelphia Phillies and the San Diego Padres visit the New York Mets.
Rain isn’t forecasted for Toronto this weekend and while Friday might bring some cloudy skies in the afternoon, Saturday and Sunday are looking sunny.
The forecast shows highs of 15 degrees on Friday and Sunday – 12 on Saturday.
If the Jays advance
The Jays would be wise to take advantage of the home-field-advantage they earned in the wild-card round, because they won’t have it if they advance to the ALDS.
The Jays’ second-round opponent would be the American League-leading Houston Astros, who have secured home-field advantage throughout the AL playoffs.
Can Toronto win the World Series?
With home-field-advantage, the Jays have a good chance of advancing past the Mariners, but vanquishing the Astros will be a tall task. If the Jays can pull-off the upset, they could end-up meeting their division rivals, the New York Yankees in the ALCS.
The Jays currently have a 2.9 per cent chance to win the World Series, according baseball reference.
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Dozens of Muslim philanthropic groups are urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to ensure that the Taxpayers’ Ombudsman office can access all the information it needs to conduct a systemic review of how the Canada Revenue Agency treats and audits Muslim-led charities.
A veteran and former Paralympian told a parliamentary committee that a caseworker from the Veterans Affairs Canada offered her medical assistance in dying, a week after the veterans affairs minister confirmed that at least four other veterans were offered the same thing.
Canada's British Columbia features in a list of the 23 best places to travel in the world in 2023. The list was created by travel magazine Condé Nast Traveller.
As Canada enters the fifth week of the flu epidemic, influenza activity is rising, with mainly young children and older adults facing the brunt of the strain, according to the latest FluWatch report.
Three Liberal ministers have declined invitations to testify at the Senate as the upper chamber probes why Canada still won't allow humanitarian workers to help in Afghanistan.
Welcome to the knockout rounds of the World Cup as the final 16 teams vie for soccer’s most coveted trophy. Netherlands, USA, Argentina and Australia all face elimination if they don’t win. CTVNews.ca takes a look at everything you need to know on Day 14 of the tournament.
Even as Ukraine celebrates recent battlefield victories, its government faces a looming challenge on the financial front: how to pay the enormous cost of the war effort without triggering out-of-control price spikes for ordinary people or piling up debt that could hamper postwar reconstruction.
The body of a man has been recovered following an industrial accident in Mississauga on Friday, Peel Regional Police say.
'Maybe the bully could do some good': Canadian actor on fundraiser, and sale of 'A Christmas Story' house
Located in Cleveland, Ohio, the house featured in the holiday film 'A Christmas Story' is up for sale. Leg lamp and all.
Young man in critical condition after being struck on Montreal highway, 1 arrested for impaired driving
Police have arrested a man for drunk driving after a 22-year-old man was struck by a car in the Viger tunnel after getting out of his own car to check an issue.
Arcade Fire returns to Montreal on Saturday night for a show at the Bell Centre. It's the local band's first show since multiple sexual assault allegations were brought forward against frontman Win Butler in the summer.
CF Montreal and Canadian national defender Alistair Johnston is heading to the Scottish Premier League, as Celtic FC in Glasgow confirmed his transfer Saturday morning.
London should batten down the hatches on Saturday, as strong winds are expected across the region as most of southern Ontario finds itself under a wind warning, with gusts of up to 90 km/h expected, according to Environment Canada.
The City of London began its annual “Lighting of the Lights” event at Victoria Park on Friday evening.
With community consultations now complete, the design and construction of the Community Addictions Hub for Sarnia-Lambton is ready to move forward. It's viewed as a significant advancement in the effort to help people cope with addictions and find a road to recovery.
Kitchener firefighters were called to put out flames at a construction trailer early Friday morning, and inside, they found a body.
Damage is estimated around $150,000 after flames tore through a garage in Brant County on Friday night.
Woodstock police say new child porn charges have been laid against a former doctor.
For the first time, the CTV Lions Children's Christmas Telethon will be held at Greater Sudbury’s new arts facility, Place des Arts.
A snowplow driver was killed Friday evening when his plow collided with a tractor-trailer near Thunder Bay.
Environment Canada has issued flash freeze and high wind warnings for several communities in northeastern Ontario.
WIND WARNING | Windy, rainy Saturday with above-average temperatures
A wind warning is in effect for Ottawa and parts of eastern Ontario with the possibility of wind gusts of up to 90 km/h
A letter from the city of Ottawa arrived in tens of thousands of mailboxes this week, asking homeowners to declare whether any of their properties are vacant.
Brady Tkachuk scored the tying goal for Ottawa in the final minute of regulation and won it with a backhander with 17.4 seconds remaining in overtime as the Senators beat the New York Rangers 3-2 Friday night.
Windsor should expect some fierce weather on Saturday, as strong winds are expected across the region as most of southern Ontario finds itself under a wind warning with gusts of up to 90 km/h expected, according to Environment Canada.
Nicholas Baggio, a resident who lives on Concession Road 3 North told CTV News Windsor that when he woke up Saturday morning, he saw recycling bins strewn across his lawn — only afterwards did he see the damage to the hydro poles on the road. Windsor police ask the public to avoid the area in the meantime.
'Tis the season to be jolly and the return of Bright Lights Windsor is about to shine during the holidays.
A woman faces impaired driving charges following a collision that seriously injured multiple people at Bayview Drive and Mapleview Drive East in Barrie Thursday evening.
More than two dozen firefighters battled flames and heavy smoke after a fire erupted at an industrial site in Bracebridge.
It's the season of giving, and the South Simcoe Police Service is truly getting in the spirit of the season.
Two people are in custody after a shooting in the Fredericton area left two people injured and prompted police to issue an emergency alert in New Brunswick.
Four organizations representing Greater Moncton’s business community held a press conference Friday calling for urgent action in regards to downtown safety and the homelessness situation.
A children's hospital in the capital of Newfoundland and Labrador's says it has had to cancel some surgeries and appointments due to a high level of respiratory illness.
If you're driving around Shaw Millennium Park Saturday, the city suggests searching for a Plan B.
Respite admissions at Rotary Flames House in Calgary will be paused and staff redeployed to help with the ongoing struggle at Alberta Children's Hospital.
Alberta’s premier is doubling down on claims her sovereignty act will boost the province’s fortunes – and she already knows how she might use the bill.
A review of Winnipeg's photo radar enforcement program could now be on the shelf permanently, despite much needed upgrades to an aging system.
WINNIPEG -- Patrik Laine had an inkling he might have a good game in his return from an ankle injury. He was right.
The lawyer representing a Winnipeg man accused of killing four Indigenous women says his client 'absolutely' maintains his innocence and intends to plead not guilty.
A review of British Columbia's COVID-19 response released Friday says despite being unprepared for the pandemic, the province showed "resilience, balance and nimbleness" during the emergency.
First responders on the mid-island are asking for the public to obey "Slow Down and Move Over" laws, especially in light of this week's heavy snowfall.
Bus drivers are speaking out about the terrible road conditions that put them in danger during this week's snowstorm.
The cause of a suspicious death at an Edmonton encampment this week is being withheld for 'investigative reasons,' the city's police service said on Friday.
It was grannies' night behind the Edmonton Oilers bench at Rogers Place last Monday night. A group of friends from Whitecourt, Alta., attended the game against the Florida Panthers in grannies costumes and stayed in character all night.
Ponoka RCMP are searching for two people who witnesses saw flee from a vehicle that hit two people the afternoon of Nov. 30.