"... I have no regrets about being here. I'll never look back and wonder."- Roy Halladay
December 15, 2009
I believe I speak for us all when I say: we have no regrets either, Doc. Regardless of the high quality of prospect porn we receive in return. None. It's been a pleasure.
When I embarked on Mission: Doc, to watch every home Halladay start, this past summer, I had no idea this season would be Halladay's last in Toronto. The mission was simply something to do. The best pitcher in baseball, tossing in my hometown, and I can be in attendance for $10? Even I, a not-so-handsomely paid journalist, was all over that shit.
Life - a friend's wedding, the passing of my dear Grandmother, an extra shift or two at work - intervened along the way. As it always does. In the end, I took in 13 of 18 Halladay starts. I spent a lot of time at the SkyDome. I spent a lot of my hard-earned money on overpriced beer. And it was worth every penny. You will never hear me say, or read that I've written: "I wish I would have seen Roy Halladay pitch more often." No regrets. Truly The Greatest Blue Jay Of All-Time.
The tributes - The Tao of Stieb, Hum and Chuck, The Blue Jay Hunter, Go Jays Go - are beginning to roll in and, in what will I think be a trend amongst Toronto writers, it isn't about the statistics. It never was. It's about what Doc stood for. For the franchise. For the city of Toronto. As Dirk Hayhurst so eloquently put it, baseball is about more than "just a bunch of numbers," and there's nobody who personifies that statement more than Roy Halladay.
Thanks for the memories, Doc. A quietly-crazy baseball town mourns your departure, and wishes you nothing but good fortunes; wishes you nothing but the ring you so covet. It's nothing personal, just business. It had to be done. I get it. Life is all about timing, and ours simply didn't match up. Get yours.