|2017 Toronto Blue Jays|
|Major League affiliations|
|Owner(s)||Rogers, CEO Mark Shapiro|
|General manager(s)||Ross Atkins|
(Buck Martinez, Pat Tabler, Dan Shulman, Matt Devlin)
|Local radio||Blue Jays Radio Network|
Sportsnet 590 the FAN
(Jerry Howarth, Joe Siddall, Mike Wilner, Duane Ward)
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The 2017 Toronto Blue Jays season was the 41st season of the franchise in the American League East division of Major League Baseball, and the 27th full season of play (28th overall) at Rogers Centre. For the first time since the 2014 season, the Blue Jays failed to make it to the postseason, finishing fourth in the AL East with a 76–86 record.
The Blue Jays offseason began on October 19, 2016, when they were eliminated by the Cleveland Indians in the American League Championship Series. On October 24, general manager Ross Atkins held a press conference at the Rogers Centre to discuss the team's offseason plans. Atkins stated that the club would likely extend qualifying offers to pending free agents José Bautista and Edwin Encarnación, and pick up Jason Grilli's $3 million contract option for the 2017 season. He also told reporters that the team could explore stretching out Joe Biagini and using him as a starting pitcher, and that Roberto Osuna would remain a relief pitcher indefinitely. With regards to the coaching staff, Atkins stated that the coaches from 2016, with the exception of assistant hitting coach Eric Owens, would return for the 2017 season.
Center fielder Kevin Pillar underwent surgery in late October to repair a thumb ligament he tore in August, and was expected to be ready for 2017 spring training. Jason Grilli's option for the 2017 season was picked up by the team on November 5. On November 7, Bautista and Encarnación were each issued a $17.2 million qualifying offer for the 2017 season. R. A. Dickey signed with the Atlanta Braves on November 10. Lourdes Gurriel Jr., a Cuban player who defected in February 2016, signed a seven-year, $22 million contract with the Blue Jays on November 12. Encarnación and Bautista each declined their qualifying offers on November 14. Kendrys Morales signed a three-year, $33 million contract with the Blue Jays on November 18. The Blue Jays also claimed Dominic Leone and Leonel Campos on November 18, and added Anthony Alford, Ryan Borucki, and Richard Ureña to the 40-man roster to protect them from the Rule 5 draft. The St. Louis Cardinals and Brett Cecil finalized a four-year, $30.5 million contract on November 21. Steve Pearce signed a two-year, $12.5 million contract with Toronto on December 5. The Blue Jays selected Glenn Sparkman in the Rule 5 draft on December 8, and lost minor leaguers Jorge Flores, Jorge Saez, and Matt Smoral in the Triple-A phase of the draft.
Edwin Encarnación agreed to a three-year, $60 million contract with the Cleveland Indians on December 22, 2016. The contract was officially signed on January 5, 2017. The Blue Jays gained a compensatory first round draft selection in the 2017 Major League Baseball draft after the signing of Encarnación became official. On January 12, Darwin Barney and Ezequiel Carrera agreed to one-year contracts worth $2.8875 million and $1.1625 million respectively, avoiding salary arbitration. Aaron Loup agreed to a one-year, $1.125 million contract for the 2017 season the following day, leaving Marcus Stroman as the lone remaining Blue Jay eligible for arbitration. After several days of negotiations, José Bautista signed a one-year, $18 million contract with the Blue Jays on January 18. His contract also includes a mutual option for the 2018 season valued at $17 million, and a $20 million vesting option for 2019. Michael Saunders signed with the Philadelphia Phillies on January 19. Four Blue Jays players were featured to MLB's Top 100 prospects list when it was revealed on January 28. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. was rated the top prospect for Toronto, ranked 34th. Sean Reid-Foley, Anthony Alford, and Richard Ureña were ranked 64th, 70th, and 94th respectively.
Entering February, the Blue Jays were still in search of relief pitching and catching depth. Jarrod Saltalamacchia was signed to a minor league contract on February 6. Three days later, the Jays signed J. P. Howell and Joe Smith to a one-year contracts worth $3 million each. Chad Girodo and A. J. Jiménez were designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Howell and Smith. Marcus Stroman won his arbitration case against the Blue Jays on February 14, and was awarded a $3.4 million salary for the season.
|November 10, 2016||Kender Villegas||Milwaukee Brewers||Minor league contract|||
|November 12, 2016||Lourdes Gurriel Jr.||Industriales||Seven-year, $22 million contract|||
|November 13, 2016||Felipe Castenada||—||Minor league contract|||
|November 13, 2016||Shane Opitz||—||Minor league contract|||
|November 14, 2016||Casey Lawrence||—||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|November 18, 2016||Kendrys Morales||Kansas City Royals||Three-year, $33 million contract|||
|December 5, 2016||Steve Pearce||Baltimore Orioles||Two-year, $12.5 million contract|||
|December 7, 2016||Brett Oberholtzer||Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim||Minor league contract|||
|December 14, 2016||TJ House||Cleveland Indians||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|December 15, 2016||Jeff Beliveau||Baltimore Orioles||Minor league contact with an invitation to spring training|||
|January 5, 2017||Gavin Floyd||—||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|January 18, 2017||José Bautista||—||One-year, $18 million contract
$17 million mutual option for the 2018 season
$20 million vesting option for the 2019 season
|January 23, 2017||Gregorio Petit||Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|January 30, 2017||Lucas Harrell||Texas Rangers||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|January 31, 2017||Jonathan Diaz||New York Yankees||Minor league contract|||
|February 6, 2017||Jarrod Saltalamacchia||Detroit Tigers||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|February 9, 2017||J. P. Howell||Los Angeles Dodgers||One-year, $3 million contract|||
|February 9, 2017||Joe Smith||Chicago Cubs||One-year, $3 million contract|||
|February 16, 2017||Mat Latos||Chicago White Sox||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|November 10, 2016||R. A. Dickey||Atlanta Braves||One-year, $7.5 million contract
$8 million club option for the 2018 season
|November 21, 2016||Dustin Antolin||Washington Nationals||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|November 21, 2016||Brett Cecil||St. Louis Cardinals||Four-year, $30.5 million contract|||
|December 6, 2016||Joaquín Benoit||Philadelphia Phillies||One-year, $7.5 million contract|||
|December 9, 2016||Junior Lake||Boston Red Sox||Minor league contract|||
|December 11, 2016||Scott Diamond||SK Wyverns||One-year, $600,000 contract|||
|December 13, 2016||Matt Dominguez||Boston Red Sox||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|December 20, 2016||Chris Colabello||Cleveland Indians||Minor league contract with an invitation to spring training|||
|January 5, 2017||Edwin Encarnación||Cleveland Indians||Three-year, $60 million contract
$25 million club option for the 2020 season
|January 19, 2017||Michael Saunders||Philadelphia Phillies||One-year, $8 million contract
$9 million club option for the 2018 season
|January 23, 2017||Josh Thole||Arizona Diamondbacks||Minor league contract|||
|January 26, 2017||Scott Feldman||Cincinnati Reds||One-year, $2.3 million contract|||
|November 18, 2016||Dominic Leone||Arizona Diamondbacks|||
|November 18, 2016||Leonel Campos||San Diego Padres|||
|January 23, 2017||Juan Graterol||Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim|||
Blue Jays pitchers and catchers reported to spring training on February 14 in Dunedin, Florida. Position players reported on February 17. Josh Donaldson suffered a right calf strain while working out on February 20, and was ruled out for 2–3 weeks. On February 23, the team announced that non-roster invitee Casey Lawrence would start the first game of the Grapefruit League season, and be followed in the rotation by Joe Biagini and Mat Latos. On March 10, in a game against the Detroit Tigers, non-roster invitee TJ House was stuck in the head by a line drive. He remained on the ground for many minutes being attended to by medical staff, and left the field in an ambulance. Early in camp, concerns were raised about the health of second baseman Devon Travis and his availability for Opening Day. On March 13, it was announced that Travis, as well as Josh Donaldson, would take part in a minor league game the following day. On March 16, the Blue Jays renewed Aaron Sanchez's contract at the MLB-minimum of $535,000. The team had reportedly attempted to negotiate a raise in payment with Sanchez and his agent, Scott Boras, however the offer was refused by Sanchez and Boras.
On March 26, manager John Gibbons announced that Marco Estrada would be the starting pitcher on Opening Day, and be followed in the rotation by J. A. Happ, Marcus Stroman, Francisco Liriano, and Aaron Sanchez. Reliever Bo Schultz, who had been competing for a spot in the bullpen, underwent Tommy John surgery on March 29, and was ruled out for the entire season. On April 1, Gibbons signed a two-year extension with the Blue Jays, that also included an option for the 2020 season. The Opening Day roster was announced on April 2. Mike Bolsinger was designated for assignment, while Melvin Upton Jr. was released. Pitchers Roberto Osuna, Glenn Sparkman, and Bo Schultz opened the year on the disabled list, along with outfielder Dalton Pompey.
The Blue Jays ended spring training with a 12–18 win–loss record, excluding three tie games that did not count toward the standings. Their .400 winning percentage was the joint-worst (along with Detroit) among American League teams in pre-season.
|Boston Red Sox||93||69||0.574||—||48–33||45–36|
|New York Yankees||91||71||0.562||2||51–30||40–41|
|Tampa Bay Rays||80||82||0.494||13||42–39||38–43|
|Toronto Blue Jays||76||86||0.469||17||42–39||34–47|
|Boston Red Sox||93||69||0.574|
Wild Card teams|
(Top two qualify for postseason)
|New York Yankees||91||71||0.562||+6|
|Kansas City Royals||80||82||0.494||5|
|Los Angeles Angels||80||82||0.494||5|
|Tampa Bay Rays||80||82||0.494||5|
|Toronto Blue Jays||76||86||0.469||9|
|Chicago White Sox||67||95||0.414||18|
The 2017 Major League Baseball draft began on June 12.
|1||22||Logan Warmoth||SS||North Carolina||June 28|
|1*||28||Nate Pearson||RHP||Central Florida||June 28|
|2||61||Hagen Danner||C||Huntington Beach High School (CA)||June 25|
|3||99||Riley Adams||C||San Diego||June 19|
|4||129||Kevin Smith||SS||Maryland||June 19|
|5||159||Cullen Large||2B||William & Mary||June 19|
|6||189||Brock Lundquist||OF||Cal State Long Beach||June 19|
|7||219||Colton Laws||RHP||Charlotte||June 19|
|8||249||Kacy Clemens||1B||UT Austin||June 19|
|9||279||Zach Logue||LHP||Kentucky||June 19|
|10||309||Justin Dillon||RHP||Cal State Sacramento||June 19|
|Opening Day starters|
|First baseman||Steve Pearce|
|Second baseman||Devon Travis|
|Third baseman||Josh Donaldson|
|Left fielder||Ezequiel Carrera|
|Center fielder||Kevin Pillar|
|Right fielder||José Bautista|
|Designated hitter||Kendrys Morales|
For the fourth consecutive year, the Blue Jays opened their season on the road. Taking on Baltimore in a brief two-game series, Toronto sent Marco Estrada to the mound on Opening Day, while Baltimore countered with Kevin Gausman. The game went into extra-innings tied 2–2, before Jason Grilli allowed a walk-off solo home run to the 2016 American League leader in home runs, Mark Trumbo. After an off-day, the Blue Jays would drop to 0–2 on the year, losing to the Orioles 3–1. Toronto earned their first win of the year in the first game of their four-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg. Kendrys Morales hit a grand slam, and Marcus Stroman held Tampa to a single run in his 61⁄3 innings in the 5–2 victory. The Blue Jays would then drop the following three games to Tampa, by scores of 10–8, 3–2, and 7–2. The losses moved the Jays to a dismal 1–5 record, matching their worst start in franchise history. To make matters worse, reliever J. P. Howell was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a left shoulder injury, and Josh Donaldson was forced to leave the final game of the road trip with a calf injury.
Playing at home for the first time in 2017, the Blue Jays opened their nine-game home stand with a short two-game series against the Milwaukee Brewers. Toronto was narrowly defeated in the first game, 4–3, which extended their home opener losing streak to six. The Blue Jays were swept by the Brewers in the final game of the series, 2–0. Marcus Stroman threw the second complete game of his career in the loss. Baltimore then began a four-game series against the Jays with a 2–1 victory. Josh Donaldson, who had reaggravated his calf injury in Tampa, was forced to leave the first game against Baltimore with the same calf injury. He was placed on the 10-day disabled list the following day. The Blue Jays dropped the next game in the series, 6–4, which lowered their record to 1–9 and furthered the 2017 team's hold on the record for the worst start in franchise history. Their seven-game losing streak came to an end on April 15, when Kendrys Morales hit a walk-off solo home run in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Jays a 2–1 victory. Toronto was unable to earn a series-split with Baltimore, dropping the final game by a score of 11–4. Aaron Sanchez was placed on the disabled list prior to the game with a blister on his pitching hand, and J. A. Happ was forced to leave the game with left elbow soreness. Happ would also go on the disabled list the following day. In the first game of a three-game series against the Boston Red Sox, the Blue Jays were unable to complete a late-game comeback, taking an 8–7 loss. Francisco Liriano and the Toronto bullpen held the Red Sox to six hits and no runs in a 3–0 win the following day. In the final game of the home stand, the Blue Jays were denied their first series-win of the year, as the offence was stymied by Red Sox ace Chris Sale. Despite some late heroics by Kendrys Morales to send the game into extra innings, the Blue Jays would lose 4–1 in ten innings. The loss moved the team to a 3–12 record, which was the worst in all of Major League Baseball.
Hoping to rebound from their woeful first 15 games, the Blue Jays began a seven-game road trip in Los Angeles, taking on the Angels for four. Ryan Tepera earned the first win of his career in the first game of the series, as Toronto barely held on to a slim 8–7 win in 13 innings. The second game saw the Jays fall just short of coming back from a 5–0 deficit, losing 5–4 and levelling the series at a game apiece. Marcus Stroman threw his second complete game in 12 days, allowing two runs on seven hits in the Blue Jays' 6–2 victory the following day. Controversy arose before, during, and after the final game of the series, as the umpiring crew from the previous game was replaced for undisclosed reasons. The replacement home plate umpire, Toby Basner, had previously drawn the ire of Toronto fans for ejecting Josh Donaldson in the first inning of a game against the Minnesota Twins the previous year. In the final game of the Angels series, Basner made several questionable calls against both teams, and ejected Blue Jays manager John Gibbons. The Angels would take the game, 2–1, and split the four-game series with Toronto. Toronto closed their road play for April in St. Louis, taking on the Cardinals. The first game of the series went into extra-innings tied 5–5. Chris Coghlan submitted a play-of-the-year candidate late in the game, leaping over Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina to score. In the top of the eleventh inning, Marcus Stroman was called upon to pinch-hit and delivered the first hit and double of his career, and later scored the go-ahead run to take a 6–5 lead that the team would not surrender. The second game of the series was rained-out, and rescheduled for the following day as a day-night doubleheader. The Cardinals would take both games, by scores of 8–4 and 6–4, and send the Blue Jays home with a losing record on their road trip.
To cap a disappointing April, the Jays returned home for a three-game series against Tampa Bay. The Rays hit four home runs in the first game of the series, defeating Toronto 7–4. The Jays held the Rays to a single run in the second game, and Roberto Osuna bounced back from a few rough outings with a 1-2-3 ninth inning to earn his second save of the season, closing the 4–1 win. In the final game of April, the Blue Jays scored three runs in the eighth inning to win 3–1, taking both their first series of the year and winning back-to-back games for the first time in 2017. The game was not without disappointment however, as Aaron Sanchez returned from the disabled list to start, but lasted only a single inning before leaving with a split fingernail on his pitching hand.
Looking to rebound from a disastrous April, the Blue Jays opened the month of May in New York, taking on the Yankees for three games. Ryan Goins led the way offensively in the first game, recording the first two-run sacrifice fly in franchise history in Toronto's 7–1 victory. New York would end the Blue Jays three-game winning streak with an 11–5 victory the following day. The Yankees would take the series with an 8–6 win in the finale, and drop the Blue Jays back to 10 games below .500. Marcus Stroman left the game in the third inning with a minor arm injury. Following a day-off, the Jays began their third series of the season against Tampa Bay. Kendrys Morales hit two home runs to lead Toronto to an 8–4 win in the series opener. Rays starter Jake Odorizzi held the Blue Jays to a single run over seven innings, as the Rays took the second game by a score of 6–1. Joe Biagini made his first Major League start in the final game of the series, pitching four strong innings and aiding the Blue Jays to a 2–1 win and just their second series-victory of the year.
The Blue Jays returned home from their 3–3 road trip and opened a nine-game home stand with a rematch of last year's American League Championship Series against the Cleveland Indians. The series marked Edwin Encarnación's return to Toronto, after departing in the offseason. Prior to the game, Russell Martin was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a left arm injury. Toronto emerged victorious in the first game, 4–2, led by a strong outing by Marcus Stroman. The Indians shutout the Jays in the second game, 6–0. Kendrys Morales left the game with a hamstring injury, adding to the growing list of injured Toronto players. The third and final game of the series went into the ninth inning tied 7–7, before the Jays managed to load the bases for Ryan Goins, who singled in the winning run. The Seattle Mariners then arrived in Toronto for a four-game series. Before the first game began, Toronto placed Francisco Liriano on the disabled list with left shoulder inflammation. Former Mariner Justin Smoak drove in four runs in the Blue Jays 7–2 victory in the opener. Joe Biagini and the Blue Jays bullpen held the Mariners scoreless in game two, earning a 4–0 victory. In the third game of the series, Kevin Pillar recorded three hits to give him the American League lead in hits with 47. The Blue Jays took the game by a score of 7–2, setting up an opportunity for their first sweep of the season. Kevin Pillar hit the first walk-off home run of his career in the final game of the series, giving the Blue Jays a 3–2 victory, their first four-game sweep since the 2015 season, and a five-game winning streak. Aaron Sanchez returned from the disabled list and made his first start since departing with a torn fingernail on April 30. To close their home stand, the Jays began a home-and-home series against the Atlanta Braves. Atlanta would take both games in Toronto, by scores of 10–6 and 9–6 respectively.
Continuing the series in Atlanta, the Blue Jays were defeated 8–4 by the Braves in a game that was rife with controversy. Freddie Freeman was hit on the wrist by an Aaron Loup pitch in the fifth inning, and left the game. In the seventh inning, Kevin Pillar struck out on a quick pitch from Braves pitcher Jason Motte. Immediately after striking out, Pillar called Motte a homophobic slur, which caused both Motte and Braves catcher Kurt Suzuki to confront him and led both dugouts to rush onto the field in defense of their teammates. In the eighth inning, José Bautista enraged the Braves by flipping his bat after hitting a solo home run. Following the game, Pillar publicly apologized to Motte. Prior to the game on May 18, the Blue Jays held a press conference with Pillar to apologize for the incident again, and announced that Pillar would be suspended for two games. It was also announced that Freeman would miss 10–12 weeks with a broken wrist. Toronto would avoid being swept by Atlanta, winning the final game of the four-game series 9–0. Marcus Stroman hit just the second home run by a Blue Jay pitcher in franchise history in the win. The Jays then returned to Baltimore for their first series at Camden Yards since the start of the season. Much like the game on Opening Day, the first game of the series went into extra innings before Jason Grilli allowed a walk-off home run. In the second game, Danny Barnes allowed a three-run home run to Welington Castillo, handing the Orioles a 7–5 win. The Blue Jays salvaged the final game of the series, defeating the Orioles by a score of 3–1. Marco Estrada struck out 12 Baltimore batters, matching his career-high for strikeouts in a single game. To close their road play for the month, the Jays swept the Milwaukee Brewers by scores of 4–3 and 8–4 in a brief, two-game series. Danny Barnes earned his first career win in the first game, and Ryan Goins hit his first grand slam in the second game, giving the Blue Jays a successful 4–3 road trip.
Heading home to close May, the Blue Jays faced the Texas Rangers for the first time since sweeping them out of the playoffs in the 2016 American League Division Series. Devon Travis hit a grand slam in the first game of the three-game series, and Justin Smoak and Kendrys Morales each homered in the 7–6 win. José Bautista provided all the offence the Jays would need in the second game, hitting a three-run home run to lead Toronto to a 3–1 win. Texas would take the final game, 3–1, and snap Toronto's five-game winning streak. The Blue Jays would close May with a home interleague matchup against the Cincinnati Reds. The Blue Jays racked up 23 hits in the first game, crushing the Reds 17–2. Kendrys Morales broke a 4–4 tie in the eighth inning of the second game with a two-run home run and sealed a 6–4 victory for Toronto. The Jays completed the sweep with a 5–4 victory to end May, led by home runs from Devon Travis and Luke Maile.
June began with a four-game series against the Yankees at the Rogers Centre. Marco Estrada allowed four earned runs in the first inning of the first game, as the Yankees defeated the Jays 12–2. Francisco Liriano returned from the disabled list to start the second game, and led Toronto to a 7–5 victory with assistance from Josh Donaldson, who hit two home runs. In the third game, Jason Grilli became the first Blue Jay reliever to allow four home runs in a single relief inning, as New York shut out the Jays 7–0. The Blue Jays would earn the series-split in the final game, winning 3–2. Devon Travis was hit on the wrist by a pitch from Yankees starter Luis Severino, and left the game after the inning.
Following their 7–3 homestand, the Jays embarked on a west coast road trip, beginning in Oakland. The Athletics would take the first two games of the three-game series, by scores of 5–3 and 4–1. Prior to the second game, it was announced that Devon Travis had suffered a recurrence of the knee injury that had ended his 2016 campaign, and was placed on the disabled list. Josh Donaldson led the Jays to a 7–5 win in the third and final game of the series, hitting a two-run home run in the tenth inning. The Blue Jays then travelled to Seattle, to take on the Mariners. Seattle won the opener, 4–2, in what resembled a Toronto home game due to the large number of Blue Jay fans present at Safeco Field. The Jays would return the favour in the second game, winning 4–2 on the back of home runs by Kendrys Morales, Ezequiel Carrera, and Justin Smoak. The Jays would win the series with a 4–0 victory on Sunday, with J. A. Happ earning his first win of the season.
After an off-day, the Jays began a short, two-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays back at home. Prior to the first game, it was announced that Devon Travis had undergone knee surgery and was ruled out for at least three months. Rays rookie Jake Faria stymied the Toronto offence as Tampa took the opener, 8–1. Russell Martin's eighth inning home run led the Jays to a 7–6 win over Tampa in the final game of the series. The Chicago White Sox then came to Toronto for a three-game set. Joe Biagini allowed seven runs in the start, and Chicago rolled to an 11–4 win. The Sox would also take the second game by a score of 5–2. The Blue Jays avoided being swept, winning the final game 7–3 thanks to two-run homers from Russell Martin and Kendrys Morales.
After a frustrating 2–3 homestand, the Jays flew to Texas to face the Rangers. With Texas ahead 6–5 in the ninth inning, the Blue Jays came back with two runs off Rangers closer Matt Bush and held on to win 7–6. The Rangers would take the second game of the series, 6–1, and drop the Jays to 0–8 in games where they could have reached a .500 record for the first time in 2017. The Toronto offence put up six runs in the first inning and the pitching held on to a 7–5 victory in the third game. The Blue Jays would drop their ninth chance at a .500 record in the final game of the series, 11–4. To end their road games for June, the Jays went to Kauffman Stadium to take on the Kansas City Royals. Toronto held a 4–1 lead in the first game heading into the bottom of the ninth inning, however, with Roberto Osuna unavailable, the combination of Ryan Tepera, Aaron Loup, and Jason Grilli allowed four runs with two outs to hand Kansas a 5–4 win. Post-game, Osuna explained to the media that he was unavailable due to an anxiety issue he had recently developed, and noted that, while he felt fine physically, he was unsure of when he would pitch again. The Royals would hold on to a 3–2 win in the second game, with Jason Vargas earning his league-leading eleventh win of the year. The Blue Jays would emerge victorious in the third and final game of the series, 8–2, with Osuna pitching the final inning.
The Jays returned home to end the month of June, taking on Baltimore. Toronto fell to a dismal 2–8 record against the Orioles in the first game, losing 3–1. Marcus Stroman led the way in the second game, striking out eight Orioles over 72⁄3 scoreless innings as Toronto won 4–0. Baltimore would return the shutout in the final game of the series, winning 2–0. In the final game of June, the Blue Jays fell 7–4 in extra-innings to the Boston Red Sox. Starter Marco Estrada walked a career-high seven batters in the loss.
The series with the Red Sox continued into July, with Chris Sale and Francisco Liriano on the mound on Canada Day. Boston would emerge victorious, 7–1, with Sale striking out 11. The Red Sox would complete the sweep on July 2, with a 15–1 thrashing of the Jays. After the game, it was announced that Justin Smoak had been named the starting first baseman for the American League at the 2017 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
To end the unofficial first half of the season, the Blue Jays embarked on a short three-game road trip against the Yankees before returning home for four games against the AL-leading Houston Astros. The Yankees would take the first game of their series, 6–3. Starter Marcus Stroman left after five innings due to concern that he was developing a blister on his right hand. The Blue Jays would snap their five-game losing streak with a 4–1 win over New York, and took the series with a 7–6 win in the finale, aided by four walks in the eighth inning by Dellin Betances. The team returned to the Rogers Centre and defeated the Astros 7–4 in the first game of their series. Before the July 7 game Roberto Osuna was added to the All-Star Game roster. Aaron Sanchez returned from his third DL stint of the year to start the second game of the series, but lasted only 12⁄3 innings and yielded seven runs. Houston would win the game, 12–2. The Jays took the third game by a score of 7–2, led by home runs from Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki. Houston shellacked the Blue Jays in the final game before the All-Star break, 19–1, handing Toronto their second-most lopsided loss in franchise history.
Following the All-Star break, the Blue Jays began a ten-game road trip in Detroit. The Jays began the second half on the right foot, walking ten times against the Tigers and winning 7–2. The Tigers would rebound to take the series, winning the next two games by scores of 11–1 and 6–5. The Jays then travelled to Fenway Park for the first time in 2017. Steve Pearce knocked in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning of the first game, aiding the Jays to a 4–3 win. Hanley Ramírez hit a walk-off solo home run in the 15th inning of the second game, as Boston evened the series with a 5–4 win. Aaron Sanchez struggled greatly in the third game of the series, taking his first loss at Fenway in seven starts, 5–1. Toronto would split the series, with Justin Smoak's two home runs helping them take the fourth and final game 8–6. To cap the road trip, the Blue Jays were swept in three games in Cleveland. Edwin Encarnación had 4 RBI in the Indians' 13–3 win in the first game. Danny Barnes yielded a walk-off home run to Francisco Lindor in the second game, taking the loss 2–1 in ten innings. Cleveland starter Corey Kluber dominated Toronto in the finale, striking out 14 in the 8–1 win.
The Jays took their 3–7 road trip back to the Rogers Centre for a seven-game homestand against the west coast Athletics and Angels. Francisco Liriano earned what became his final win as a Blue Jay in the first game of the four-game series, 4–2. César Valdez earned his first MLB win in seven years, defeating Oakland 4–1 the following night. The Jays took the third game of the series, 3–2, after a walk-off solo home run by Kendrys Morales. Steve Pearce hit a walk-off grand slam in the tenth inning of the final game to give the Jays an 8–4 win and a four-game sweep. Controversy arose in the fifth inning, after home plate umpire Will Little ejected John Gibbons, Marcus Stroman, and Russell Martin for arguing about the strike zone. The Blue Jays lost their first game against the Angels, 7–2, and also lost Troy Tulowitzki to a severe ankle sprain. With trade rumours swirling, Francisco Liriano pitched a shutout through five innings, but faltered in the sixth as Toronto dropped the second game, 6–5. The Jays salvaged the final game of the series, thanks to an ultimate grand slam from Steve Pearce, his second walk-off grand slam of the week.
Prior to their final game in July, the Blue Jays made two trades. The first sent Francisco Liriano to the Houston Astros for outfielders Nori Aoki and Teoscar Hernández, while the second swapped Joe Smith with the Cleveland Indians for pitcher Thomas Pannone and infielder Samad Taylor. In Chicago to take on the White Sox that night, the Jays were defeated 7–6.
Continuing their series with the White Sox, the Jays opened August with an 8–4 win, and took the series with a 5–1 victory the following day. After travelling to Houston, the Blue Jays were blown out by the Astros in the first of a three-game set, 16–7. Toronto took the second game, 4–3, after scoring the winning run in the tenth inning against Francisco Liriano, who they traded to Houston less than a week prior. The Astros would win the final game of the series, 7–6, aided by a four-run ninth inning.
The Jays began a crucial ten-game homestand on August 8, with three against division-rival New York. Josh Donaldson provided all of the offence for Toronto in the first game, hitting a pair of two-run home runs in the 4–2 victory. The Yankees won the second game, 11–5, which dropped the Jays to five games back of the Mariners for a wild-card spot. Marco Estrada's seven shutout innings led the Jays to a 4–0 win and a series victory the following day. Toronto began a three-game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates on August 11. The Jays lost the series opener, 4–2, and also lost Russell Martin to an oblique injury. In the second game of the series, first lieutenant Chris Rowley made his debut, and in doing so became the first West Point graduate to play in Major League Baseball. He earned the win, 7–2, after pitching 51⁄3 innings of one-run ball. The Jays improved their homestand record to 4–2 with a 7–1 win over the Pirates the next day. In the first of four games against Tampa Bay, Nick Tepesch held the Rays to one run through his six innings and earned the win, 2–1. Tampa continued their run of success against Marco Estrada in the second game, tagging him for six runs in the 6–4 Toronto loss. Toronto rebounded from the loss and took the last two games of the series, 3–2 and 5–3. The wins moved the Jays to within three games of a .500 record, which was the closest they had been to a level record since late June.
From that point on, however, the Blue Jays struggled in August. They flew to Chicago to take on the Cubs for three games and were swept by the defending World Series champions. Jake Arrieta led Chicago to a 7–4 win in the first game, and José Quintana took the victory in the second game, 4–3. The final game went into extra innings tied 3–3. The Jays took a 5–3 lead in the tenth, but Roberto Osuna and the Toronto defence could not hold the lead, taking the loss 6–5. In Tampa Bay for three games after an off-day, the Jays suffered their fourth-consecutive loss, 6–5. The Blue Jays hit six home runs the following night, ending their losing streak with a 7–6 win. Tampa Bay won the final game of the series, by a score of 2–0. The Jays took on the Minnesota Twins for three after returning to the Rogers Centre. While Justin Smoak hit his 35th home run of the year in the first game, Bartolo Colón led the Twins to a 6–1 win. The Jays won a slugfest second game, 10–9, but lost the rubber match with Minnesota the following day, 7–2. Byron Buxton hit three home runs for Minnesota in the final game. Toronto was then dealt a crushing blow to their slim playoff hopes, as they were swept by the visiting Red Sox. Boston took the three-game series by scores of 6–5, 3–0, and 7–1, which dropped the Jays to a season-low 11 games under .500. August ended on a minor high-note, as Toronto took the opening game of a four-game series in Baltimore 11–8, led by a three home run game from Kendrys Morales.
The Blue Jays opened September by continuing their series with the Orioles. Due to September roster expansion, the Blue Jays recalled Teoscar Hernández and Richard Ureña, and also added Carlos Ramírez and Michael Saunders to their roster in time for the second game of the series. Joe Biagini would pitch seven complete innings and record a career-high ten strikeouts in the game, but the Orioles walked off the Blue Jays in the thirteenth inning and won the game 1–0. Marcus Stroman started the third game of the series, but had to be removed after pitching 12⁄3 innings when he suffered a bruised elbow from a Mark Trumbo line drive. The Blue Jays however, went to win the game 7–2. In the series finale, the Blue Jays carried a 4–3 lead into the bottom of the ninth inning, but lost the game 5–4 in the twelfth inning. The road trip concluded with three games against the Red Sox in Boston, whom the Blue Jays had a 3–10 record against. In the first game, the Blue Jays hit four home runs as a team and won by a score of 10–4. The Blue Jays led 2–0 in the bottom of the ninth inning but lost the second game by a score of 3–2 in nineteen innings. Roberto Osuna suffered his league-leading tenth blown save of the season and the Blue Jays suffered their third extra-innings loss in five games. The Blue Jays also struck out a franchise-record 23 times in the game. The Blue Jays lost the rubber match 6–1, recording only four hits in the game. The Blue Jays ended their road trip 3–4, with three of the four losses being walk-off losses in extra innings.
Following an off day, the Blue Jays returned home, beginning a homestand with three games against the Detroit Tigers. Marcus Stroman made his scheduled start in the series opener following his injury-shortened start in Baltimore. Richard Ureña hit his first career home run, but the Blue Jays were unable to overcome a second inning deficit caused by a Nick Castellanos grand slam and lost the game by a score of 5–4. in the second game, Brett Anderson earned his first win for the Blue Jays and Kevin Pillar contributed with four hits, helping the Blue Jays win 5–4. In the rubber match, Teoscar Hernández recorded his first multi home run game, hitting his first two home runs for the Blue Jays and contributing with 5 RBI. The Blue Jays won the game 8–2 and won their first series since mid-August when they won three out of four games against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Blue Jays wrapped up their homestand with three games against the Baltimore Orioles, winning the first game 4–3. Joe Biagini started the second game and pitched his most impressive start, pitching eight innings for the first time in his career. Trailing 2–1 in the bottom of the ninth inning, the Blue Jays came back and defeated the Orioles 3–2, with Richard Ureña tallying his first career walk-off hit. The Blue Jays would not complete the sweep, as Baltimore would win the series finale 2–1. Following their 4–2 homestand, the Blue Jays traveled to Minnesota for a four-game series against the Twins, who currently occupied the second wildcard spot. In the first game, with the Blue Jays trailing the Twins 2–1 in the top of the ninth inning with two outs, Justin Smoak hit his 38th home run of the season to tie the game. However, the Blue Jays lost 3–2 in the tenth inning, suffering a fourth extra innings walk-off loss in September. The Blue Jays would rebound and win the second game of the series 4–3. In the third game of the series, Josh Donaldson hit two home runs and Marco Estrada pitched eight innings, leading the Blue Jays to a 7–2 victory. The series would not end nicely for the Blue Jays, as Joe Biagini struggled in his start in the series finale and was pulled after 11⁄3 innings in a 13–7 loss. Josh Donaldson hit five home runs in the four-game series.
Following an off day, the Blue Jays returned home for their final homestand of the season. Hosting the Kansas City Royals for a three-game series, the first game would feature a record-setting moment in the MLB as the Royals' Alex Gordon hit the 5694th overall home run of the 2017 season, setting an all-time record. Despite giving up the record-setting home run, the Blue Jays won the game 5–2 backed by a seven-inning effort by Marcus Stroman and a three RBI night by Darwin Barney. The Blue Jays would drop the final two games of the series; Brett Anderson surrendered eight runs and was pulled after 11⁄3 innings en route to a 15–5 loss in the second game and they would be shut out by Kansas City 1–0 in the series finale. This loss ensured the Blue Jays with finish their season with a losing record, for the first time since 2013. The Blue Jays then wrapped up their home schedule, hosting the New York Yankees for a three-game series. The first game was an 8–1 blowout win for Toronto, following a seven-inning outing by Marco Estrada and a Ryan Goins grand slam. However, the Blue Jays lost the second game 5–1, and were officially eliminated from playoff contention. In what would be his final home game as a Blue Jay, José Bautista contributed two hits and an RBI as the Blue Jays took the rubber match 9–5. Teoscar Hernandez, having been used primarily in right field throughout the month to replace Bautista, homered in each game of the series.
Ending their season with a six-game road trip, the Blue Jays returned to Boston for the second time in September to face the Red Sox for three games. The Blue Jays won the first two games 6–4 and 9–4, winning a series against the Red Sox for the first time in 2017. However, Marco Estrada struggled during the series finale and was pulled after 21⁄3 innings as the Blue Jays went on to lose 10–7. Following an off day, the Blue Jays began a three-game series against the Yankees in New York to conclude their season. The Blue Jays dropped the first two games of the series by scores of 4–0 and 2–1. The Blue Jays ended the season on a positive note, winning their final game by a score of 2–1, despite recording only two hits in the game. The Blue Jays finished their 2017 season with a 76–86 record and missed the playoffs for the first time since the 2014 season.
|Blue Jays win||Blue Jays loss||Game postponed|
|2017 Game Log|
|2017 Toronto Blue Jays|
|J. A. Happ||25||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|||
|Dwight Smith Jr.||12||27||2||10||2||0||0||1||1||1||.370|||
|J. A. Happ||25||25||10||11||0||3.53||1.31||1451⁄3||145||64||57||46||142|||
|J. P. Howell||16||0||1||1||0||7.36||1.82||11||13||9||9||7||6|||
|Justin Smoak||All-Star||July 2, 2017|||
|Roberto Osuna||American League Reliever of the Month||July 3, 2017|||
|Roberto Osuna||All-Star||July 7, 2017|||
|Marcus Stroman||Gold Glove||November 7, 2017|||
See also: Minor League Baseball
|Triple-A||Buffalo Bisons||International League||Bobby Meacham||65–76||North Division
|Did not qualify|||
|Double-A||New Hampshire Fisher Cats||Eastern League||Gary Allenson||59–80||East Division
|Did not qualify|||
|Advanced-A||Dunedin Blue Jays||Florida State League||John Schneider||34–35 (first half)
38–31 (second half)
4th place (first half)
2nd place (second half)
|Won SF 2–1
|Class-A||Lansing Lugnuts||Midwest League||Cesar Martin||37–29 (first half)
26–44 (second half)
4th place (first half)
8th place (second half)
|Did not qualify|||
|Short Season-A||Vancouver Canadians||Northwest League||Rich Miller||21–17 (first half)
22–16 (second half)
1st place (first half)
2nd place (second half)
|Won SF 2–0
Won F 3–1
Won League Championship
|Rookie Advanced||Bluefield Blue Jays||Appalachian League||Dennis Holmberg||46–22||East Division
Lost East Division finals
|Rookie||GCL Blue Jays||Gulf Coast League||Luis Hurtado||35–25||Northwest Division
|Did not qualify|||
|Rookie||DSL Blue Jays||Dominican Summer League||John Tamargo Jr.||44–26||Baseball City Division
Lost Semi-Final B