Remembering Roy Halladay (RIP)

(Nov 8/2017)

For more than a decade, Roy Halladay symbolized hope for a generation of Toronto Blue Jays fans. Despite whatever other spare parts had been assembled in the rotation, Toronto fans knew that every 5th game, their team would have someone special on the mound, and his starts became must-see TV. I’ll never forget the disappointment in late 2005, in the midst of one of his finest seasons, when Halladay was felled by a Kevin Mench comebacker that broke his leg and forced him to miss the remainder of the season. His truncated stats for that 2005 season? A 12-4 record in 19 starts, a 2.41 ERA, and a career low 0.96 WHIP.

After a decade of mediocre Blue Jays baseball, Halladay was traded to the Phillies after the 2009 season by incoming General Manager Alex Anthopoulos. By that point, the writing was on the wall for the fan base, and they were almost on board with granting Roy a reprieve from the carousel of .500 baseball. Upon his arrival with the Phillies, a veteran laden roster who had captured the 2008 commissioner’s trophy, Halladay somehow got even better. In late May, he would throw a perfect game against the Marlins, leading to a 21-10 record, a 2.44 ERA and a career best 7.30 K/BB ratio. He would put the icing on the cake in early October, pitching a no-hitter in his first career playoff game. Blue Jays fans were both heartbroken, and extremely proud of their once prodigal son.

Check out a promotional video for the Icon A5:

It's mildly ironic that Halladay posted his second lowest career ERA against the Blue Jays of all teams, putting up a 1.69 ERA in 2 starts against his former team. He was also 2-0 in those two starts. Blue Jays fans couldn’t care less that their team lost both of those games.

Check out some highlights of Roy Halladay's no-hitter in the 2010 NLDS:

Nearly a decade since his departure, and his former team is still searching for any sort of a true number 1 starter (save for the two months at the end of the 2015 season after the acquisition of David Price).

People say that history repeats itself… some feel that the Blue Jays have a young pitcher who might just be able to finally give the team it’s first bona fide ace since the best pitcher in franchise history was traded south of the border. Unfortunately blister problems sidelined Aaron Sanchez for a majority of the 2017 season. 2018 will go a long way towards finding out if he can truly follow in a legends footsteps.