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  #81  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2017, 1:16 AM
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^I'm not arguing that point because it would impossible to determine whether that's in any way true or not. It's pretty safe to say it isn't.

I'm simply trying to paint a picture, for people who aren't aware for whatever reason, of how popular the Expos were both in Montreal and the rest of Canada.
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  #82  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2017, 2:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Dr Awesomesauce View Post
“The Montreal Expos in the early ’80s were more popular than the Montreal Canadiens,” Mitch Melnick of TSN Radio 690 says in the documentary. “That’s a fact. That’s not pie-in-the-sky thinking from hardcore baseball fans. They were giving away 2,000 tickets a game to fill the seats at the Montreal Forum in the early ’80s while the Expos were setting franchise attendance records.”

It's not a fact per se but there's pretty strong evidence in support of this claim. Full Gazette article here.

And during this period (from 1969 through the early '80s), the Expos were 'Canada's team.' It was only once the Jays got good (1983 ish) that they actually started to push Expo fans out of Southern Ontario and the rest of Anglo Canada. Some converted. Some just disappeared. ;-)
Mr. Melnick can say what he wants but while the Expos were extremely popular in the early 80s, it can't be said with such certainty that they were more popular than the Habs in those days.

Let's go back in time - I was a kid back then in Montreal's wider orbit.

In that era the Habs were coming off four straight Stanley Cup wins.

They won six of 10 Stanley Cups during the previous decade.

In the early 80s many of the superstars of the 70s like Guy Lafleur were still on the team.

In the first six years of the 80s, they had winning records (almost always by a wide margin) in five of them, and finished first in their division more often than not.

The early years of the 80s were also the beginning of the bitter Canadiens-Nordiques rivalry. It reached a fever pitch fairly early when the upstart Nords beat the Habs in the 1982 playoffs. The two teams met in the playoffs regularly in the years following.

The one year the Habs had a losing record in 83-84 they still made the playoffs and had a surprisingly good run (and eliminated the Nords) thanks to rookie goalie flash in the pan Steve Penney.

So sure, the Expos were a big deal too and it was a great time to be a Montreal sports fan.

But talk of the Expos eclipsing the Habs is nonsense.
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  #83  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2017, 11:54 AM
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@Acajack
'So sure, the Expos were a big deal too and it was a great time to be a Montreal sports fan.

But talk of the Expos eclipsing the Habs is nonsense.'


Probably but it is a surprisingly common sentiment. Perhaps some fans 'misremember.' Je me souviens. Do you, 'Spos fans?

But, yes, as you state, the point here is that the Expos were a big deal - I think it's important sports fans outside Montreal understand that. They weren't dubbed the team of the '80s for nothing.
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  #84  
Old Posted Apr 4, 2017, 12:34 PM
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@Acajack
'So sure, the Expos were a big deal too and it was a great time to be a Montreal sports fan.

But talk of the Expos eclipsing the Habs is nonsense.'


Probably but it is a surprisingly common sentiment. Perhaps some fans 'misremember.' Je me souviens. Do you, 'Spos fans? ]
I most definitely do remember as I was more into the Expos than the Habs as a kid in those days for some reason. (Though I liked both.) But I also remember that people were still a bit too much into the Habs and not enough into the worthy Expos for my liking, and being a bit frustrated about that.

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But, yes, as you state, the point here is that the Expos were a big deal - I think it's important sports fans outside Montreal understand that. They weren't dubbed the team of the '80s for nothing.
Ah yes, the All-Star Game in Montreal. One of my uncles and basically all of the men in their 20s and 30s from their small town in northern New Brunswick took a bus trip to Montreal to go see the game. Dave Concepcion's home run landed in the crowd almost right next to where they were sitting. I think you can see my uncle on the replay if you look close enough. Heady days.
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  #85  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2017, 1:57 AM
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^Two years later they traded Gary Carter to save a few bucks. The year after that, Andre Dawson. Tim Raines managed to hang on until after the 1990 season, though they went to extraordinary measures to ensure he was underpaid.

Some have suggested that it was the trading of Carter (DEC '84) that marked the point where Expos baseball started going in the wrong direction. To quote Gary Carter (speaking about himself in the 3rd person), 'If the Expos can finish in fifth place with Gary Carter, they can do the same without him.' That pretty much sums up Bronfman's attitude to winning from then on.

Simultaneously, the Jays began moving in the right direction. They were good. They were young. They held on to their stars rather than dealing them to save money.

Last edited by Dr Awesomesauce; Apr 5, 2017 at 2:09 AM.
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  #86  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2017, 3:20 PM
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This play should make the top ten list for best plays of the year.

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  #87  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 12:58 AM
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So the season's not a total loss then.
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  #88  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2017, 1:46 PM
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^Come on. They are only 8 games out and it's April?!?
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  #89  
Old Posted Apr 28, 2017, 1:02 AM
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^I can't tell if that's sarcasm or not.

As of this moment, they're 8.5 games out of 1st and, more importantly, 5.5 games out of the 2nd wildcard spot.

You can't completely discount a team in April, it's true, but this is the worst team in the whole of baseball right now and they have some significant injuries to overcome.

Nothing about the Jays looks good at the moment. Nothing.
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  #90  
Old Posted Apr 28, 2017, 5:12 PM
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^It was sarcastic. 8.5 games, wait now 9 games out over a single month of the season is really bad. Like really, really, really bad. They are 26th in runs scored, 26th in batting average and 23rd in ERA. Just all-around bad. They weren't playing good before Donaldson went down and they aren't playing any better since.

They are obviously a better team than their record indicates, but there's a lot of blame to lay around on pretty much every player.
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  #91  
Old Posted Apr 28, 2017, 6:17 PM
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I'd rather them slump now then after the spring but ya it's a terrible start to hopefully what will be another great season of baseball.
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  #92  
Old Posted Apr 29, 2017, 4:12 AM
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I'd rather them slump now then after the spring but ya it's a terrible start to hopefully what will be another great season of baseball.
It won't be. It's already too late, I'm afraid. It'll be long and painful, unless you're a fan of another team. ;-)

You can be sure the Front Office had it's fingers crossed the team would be competitive this year. I really and truly feel they did their best and I'm not going to judge them until they've had a chance to really fix this organisation. We won't know whether they've done that for years to come.

But getting back to 2017, when you sign guys like Bautista, Pearce, Howell, Saltalamacchia et al, what you're telling fans is that you want to compete but only if it's on the cheap. That's something Rogers has to answer for, not Atkins and Shapiro.
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  #93  
Old Posted May 9, 2017, 3:31 PM
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It looks like the Jays are back in a groove. Last nights game was proof just how good this team is even with some of our best players still off injured. Nice to see the fans give Edwin a standing ovation before his first at bat as well. Also nice to see Tulo is almost ready to get back on the field, fingers crossed we get Donaldson back soon as well.

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  #94  
Old Posted May 9, 2017, 6:03 PM
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I wasn't expecting much from them this season but, wow, that's one bad April.
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  #95  
Old Posted May 9, 2017, 8:43 PM
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Perhaps you're not a Jays fan or baseball fan. Every Jays fan I know expects a big year for them. April was bad and all the injuries didn't help the cause. It's still early, we're only 9 games back from top spot with so many games left over a solid 4 months or regular season.

Another killer catch by Superman Pillar last night.
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  #96  
Old Posted May 9, 2017, 8:48 PM
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Okay, I'm an admitted bandwagon-case with the the Blue Jays, I only really follow them when they start making a deep run in the playoffs. So you're saying that the terrible April they had isn't terminal? They can quite possibly turn it around and have another go at the finals?
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  #97  
Old Posted May 9, 2017, 9:20 PM
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Originally Posted by TorontoDrew View Post
Perhaps you're not a Jays fan or baseball fan. Every Jays fan I know expects a big year for them. April was bad and all the injuries didn't help the cause. It's still early, we're only 9 games back from top spot with so many games left over a solid 4 months or regular season.

Another killer catch by Superman Pillar last night.
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I'm a fan of baseball in part to the stats. I'm not your usual Jay fans which of course will have a favourable bias towards the team's expectations.

This is an overhyped team because they have the ability to crush people with the long ball. You can't rest on the long ball. I'm sure they will improve from their April performance but, I don't see this as a (guaranteed) playoff bound team. I see them as a 500 team. Manufacturing runs has always been their biggest weakest (and a big one you don't want to have) and they lost the best player they had at doing it.
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  #98  
Old Posted May 13, 2017, 5:03 AM
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It won't be. It's already too late, I'm afraid. It'll be long and painful, unless you're a fan of another team. ;-)
^I spoke too soon. As a long time baseball fan, I know better; they were so bad that I just couldn't help myself.

The Jays have now played 36 games. They're 15-21, 8 GB in the East and 4 GB in the Wild Card race.

If you divide the season into 12 game chunks, it looks like this:
1st 12 games: 2-10.
2nd 12 games: 5-7.
3rd 12 games: 8-4.

This trend won't continue per se but it seems they've finally woken up. Here's a fact this team can't escape: they weren't ready to play in April. Somebody has to answer for that because it's as clear as day and now the mountain might be too high.
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  #99  
Old Posted May 13, 2017, 5:27 AM
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It's a very long season. That people are counting them out and it's not even June is a bit much.
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  #100  
Old Posted May 13, 2017, 5:42 AM
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Yea, it's ridiculous to count them out this early. They're only 22% into the season - still a long way to go.

There have been plenty of teams who had a big second half of the season to make the playoffs. And the Jays haven't even started the second quarter of the season yet.

Plus they're only 8 games back... and that's only because the Orioles and Yankees are having a great start. They could easily go into a slump.
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