Enough with the rankings already

2017 marks 40 years since the Toronto Blue Jays made their Major League debut on a cold and snowy April afternoon at Exhibition Stadium.

jays-home-opener-1977.jpg.size.custom.crop.1086x720

Zamboni clearing snow off the field at Exhibition Stadium – April 7, 1977

A lot has changed since then.

The Jays now play 2.3 miles (I don’t speak kilometers sorry — pronounced: sorree) up Lake Shore Boulevard at the retractable roof covered Rogers Centre in the heart of downtown Toronto (pronounced Torono). Exhibition Stadium was torn down in 1999 and the site is now the location of BMO Field — home to the Toronto Argonauts.

Rogers-Centre-Dirt-Infield

Rogers Centre (formerly SkyDome) home to the Toronto Blue Jays since June 1989

So where am I getting at with all of this, and why did I just give you a brief history of Toronto sports?

The latter can be answered simply by saying Toronto is one of the greatest sports towns in North America.

The former question comes from an article posted this week on Sportsnet; Canada’s largest sports network conglomerate. They asked Canadians, and to a lesser extent, Americans like me, to rank the 40 greatest Blue Jays of all time.

Roy Halladay number one, easy.

Halladay 1

Roy Halladay pitching for the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre

He was my favorite player growing up and why I’m a diehard Jays fan.

To me the remainder of the list was arbitrary.

But it got me thinking; what is with rankings in sports?

After all, aren’t they arbitrary as well?

I mean, how do you say Halladay was better than Roberto Alomar, Dave Steib or George Bell?

Half of those four are pitchers and the other half position players.

So trying to compare them is like apples and oranges.

Every February, CBS and FOX rank the greatest Super Bowls of all time.

Again, arbitrary.

To me, the greatest Super Bowl of all time (Super Bowl XXII — Redskins 42, Broncos 10). But that answer is going to be different than the one you would hear from a 49ers or Cowboys or Dolphins fan.

President Ronald Reagan throwing a pass to Redskins receiver Ricky Sanders during the team’s visit to the White House

Side note: Unless you’re a Falcons fan, it’s pretty hard to argue last year’s Super Bowl was not the greatest of all time from a strictly non-partisan viewpoint.

SportsCenter has made arbitrary rankings a thing with their nightly Top 10 highlight reel.

The point of all this is as sports fans we’re always going to disagree on everything from which beer tastes best before kickoff (Coors Light) to what jersey we should wear to the game (none because if I do the Redskins will lose…).

It’s up to sportswriters to recognize their arbitrary lists aren’t showing us anything other than the fact they have WAY too much time on their hands!

 

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