Despite the buzz around the Blue Jays’ stellar lineup, the team started the season on a sour note, losing 1-8 to the Seattle Mariners. They continued their underwhelming performance until mid-May, when they began a winning tear which saw them inch up to the top of their division by the end of June. This was partly made possible by the re-introduction of veteran Blue Jay Tony Fernández to the team, who served as a steadying presence. However, the Jays soon hit another snag. They lost ten of their eleven games heading into the All-Star Game break, only managing to keep a grasp on their standing at the top of the division by a mere half point.
As the manager of the previous World Series winning team, the Jays’ Cito Gaston managed the American League’s All-Star team of 1993. In this annual competition, the most promising athletes from each league in MLB are invited to compete against one another. Seven of the twenty-eight American League players, a full 25%, were Blue Jays that year, including the aforementioned members of WAMCO, Pat Hentgen and Duane Ward. The American League ultimately beat the National League 9-3.
Perhaps it was this victory in the All-Star Game which helped the Jays rebound from their slump. By July 31st they were standing at 60-45. It was also at the end of July, only hours before the trade deadline, that the Jays signed outfielder Rickey Henderson, who injected a dose of confidence into the team. Though Henderson suffered a foot injury just two weeks after his arrival, it could not manage to hinder the Jays’ steady ascent. They finished the summer by making history as the first team in one hundred years to include players with the top three batting averages in the American League, with Olerud at .363, Molitor at .332 and Alomar at .326.
A bobblehead produced in 2018 to commemorate Roberto Alomar, Paul Molitor and John Olerud becoming the 1993 American League Batting Title Top Three.
Heading into autumn and the final stretch of the regular season, the Jays were only ahead of the Yankees by one-and-a-half games, and needed a final push. Though they lost six games in a row in early September, they quickly compensated with a nine game win streak. The team finished the season with an 11-6 victory over the Baltimore Orioles, giving them a record of 95-67, PCT .586 against the Yankees’ .543. The long battle to reach the ALCS had been won, and they were one step closer to their ultimate goal.