The Toronto Blue Jays announced on Thursday, Feb. 18 they will at least start their season playing home games outside of Canada for the second year in a row. The team announced its home games will be played at TD Ballpark in Dunedin, Florida due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Canadian border restrictions will not allow the Blue Jays to hold games in Toronto.
Blue Jays Update On 2021 Home Location: pic.twitter.com/b2Eu5iknjs
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) February 18, 2021
It remains to be seen whether the Blue Jays will finally be able to return to the Rogers Centre in Toronto at some point during this MLB season, but the organization confirmed they will be playing home games in Florida through May 2 at least. This will feature the team’s first two homestands of the season, and that includes games scheduled against the Los Angeles Angels, New York Yankees, Washington Nationals and Atlanta Braves.
TD Ballpark is also where the Blue Jays operate their spring training. Their spring training schedule is set to start on Sunday, Feb. 28 against the Yankees.
After May 2, the Blue Jays will need to decide where they will continue playing their home games, whether it’s in Toronto or Dunedin. It’s also a possibility, the Blue Jays return to Buffalo, New York where they played in 2020. The team could wind up having played home games at three different venues over the course of the 2021 regular season.
The Toronto Raptors recently announced they would finish the rest of the NBA season playing at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida, so it’s another tough blow for Canadian sports fans wanting to see the country’s lone NBA and MLB team to play inside their borders. However, the Blue Jays did this last year as well. Throughout the entirety of the 60-game 2020 regular season, the organization played home games at Sahlen Field in Buffalo.
Home vs. Road Betting Splits
Since the Blue Jays have experience playing at home outside of their traditional home venue, we can look at some of the betting figures and analyze that data. Let’s check out the home and road splits from last season when they played in Sahlen Field. The Blue Jays will again be the only team in the MLB not playing in their regular home ballpark to start 2021.
The sample size won’t be exactly the same as the regular 162-game slate, but here’s a look at the numbers from the Blue Jays’ 60-game 2020 for home and road games.
In 60 regular season games, the Blue Jays finished with a 32-28 overall record on the moneyline, which is 53.3%, 11th best in Major League Baseball.
Despite it being just an adopted home field for the season, the Blue Jays played much better at their home base of Sahlen Field with a record of 17-9 at home in 26 games. That is a 65.4% winning percentage, which ranked ninth in baseball. In their 34 road games, the Blue Jays were much worse at 15-19 for a 44.1% winning percentage, 16th best in the MLB.
The Blue Jays finished with a run line record at exactly .500 at 30-30 in 2020, though they fared a little better at home than they did on the road. Toronto covered the run line at a 53.8% rate at home with a 14-12 record, 11th in baseball. On the road, the Blue Jays covered the run line 47.1% of the time with a 16-18 record, good for 18th in the league.
Toronto hit the over slightly more often than the under in 2020, reaching the mark at 29-28-3 for 50.9%. That rate was tied for 11th in baseball.
The over was much more likely to hit when the Blue Jays played at home last season, as the over cashed at a rate of 15-10-1. The 60% over rate was fourth in baseball. On the road, the under was the better play at a 14-18-2 pace. The under hit at 56.2% of the time, which ranked eighth among teams hitting the under on the road.
The MLB regular season is set to begin for all 30 teams on Thursday, April 1. The Blue Jays will open up with a road game with the Yankees.