Skip to content

ICYMI, Edwin Encarnacion is superb

Aug 24, 2013, 10:57 PM EDT

Edwin Encarnacion Getty Images

The Blue Jays are just going through the paces right now. Absent Jose Bautista, they’ve lost seven in a row and fallen to 57-73 on the season. The year’s most disappointing team, they have nothing left to play for.

Just don’t tell Edwin Encarnacion that. He’s homered three times during the current seven-game losing streak. Tonight’s was his 33rd of the year. He also walked three times, and he’s now sporting an outstanding 55/71 K/BB ratio for the year. Since the beginning of June, he has 18 homers, 47 walks and just 22 strikeouts.

Encarnacion is currently on pace to finish the season with 41 homers and 69 strikeouts. Just two different players since 2001 have managed to have 40-homer seasons while striking out less than 80 times: Albert Pujols did it six times, the last in 2010, and Barry Bonds did it three times (plus twice more in the 1990s).

This is Hall of Fame-type territory, for sure. Not that every player who has done it has gone on to the Hall of Fame, but almost everyone to accomplish it is at least a fringe candidate. Besides Bonds and Pujols, the last to get there were Gary Sheffield, Vladimir Guerrero, Todd Helton, Rafael Palmeiro and Mike Piazza. The exceptions to the fringe-HOFer rule in the last 40 years are Tino Martinez in 2007, George Bell in 1987 and Ben Oglivie in 1980.

Obviously, Encarnacion currently rates a lot closer to Martinez than Pujols, but he’s far from a flash in the pan. He was an underrated hitter in his early years in Cincinnati, with his poor glove holding him back and getting him sent to the bench whenever he had a few bad games in a row. He’s been one of the AL’s best hitters the last two years now and he’s still just 30. He should have at least another two or three big years in front of him.

Latest Posts
  1. Settling the Score: Friday’s results

    May 23, 2015, 8:57 AM EDT

    The Kansas City Royals' Kendrys Morales is congratulated after a three-run home run in the first inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., on Friday, May 22, 2015. (John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/TNS via Getty Images) Getty Images

    A quick recap of a busy Friday around MLB, including the rolling Royals.

  2. Video: Mike Trout makes a ridiculous slide to beat the tag at third base

    May 22, 2015, 11:59 PM EDT

    Mike Trout Mike Trout

    Mike Trout is pretty good at this baseball thing.

  3. Marlins place Henderson Alvarez and Mat Latos on the disabled list

    May 22, 2015, 11:40 PM EDT

    Henderson Alvarez Henderson Alvarez

    Bad news for the reeling Marlins: starters Mat Latos and Henderson Alvarez both will take at least a couple of weeks off due to injuries.

  4. Ichiro Suzuki passes Babe Ruth on the all-time hits list

    May 22, 2015, 11:05 PM EDT

    Ichiro Suzuki Ichiro Suzuki

    Ichiro Suzuki may be close to the end of a brilliant career, but he’s not done moving up baseball’s all-time leaderboards.

  5. Video: Bryce Harper ties for MLB lead in homers, Nelson Cruz quickly unties (again)

    May 22, 2015, 10:25 PM EDT

    Bryce Harper Bryce Harper

    Nelson Cruz kept pace with Bryce Harper, taking back the MLB lead in home runs shortly after losing it.

  6. Billy Beane: “I’m not trading [Stephen] Vogt. Period.”

    May 22, 2015, 9:35 PM EDT

    Stephen Vogt Stephen Vogt

    Stephen Vogt has been baseball’s best-hitting catcher and GM Billy Beane plans to hold onto him.

  7. Video: Athletics closer Sean Doolittle gets some media training

    May 22, 2015, 8:40 PM EDT

    Sean Doolittle Sean Doolittle

    Athletes aren’t born with an ability to speak with the media. We got a look into a media coaching session between Athletics closer Sean Doolittle and girlfriend Eireann Dolan.

  8. Dodgers acquire Eric Surkamp from the White Sox

    May 22, 2015, 7:51 PM EDT

    Eric Surkamp Eric Surkamp

    The Dodgers added some pitching depth on Friday, acquiring pitcher Eric Surkamp from the White Sox.

  9. White Sox push back Carlos Rodon’s next start

    May 22, 2015, 7:45 PM EDT

    Carlos Rodon Carlos Rodon

    The White Sox are managing Carlos Rodon’s workload so they pushed the lefty’s start back from Monday.

  10. Coco Crisp likely headed to the disabled list, but will avoid surgery

    May 22, 2015, 6:55 PM EDT

    Coco Crisp Coco Crisp

    Coco Crisp will go back on the disabled list, but has chosen against having career-ending surgery.

  11. Mets to utilize a six-man rotation after Dillon Gee returns Saturday

    May 22, 2015, 6:05 PM EDT

    Dillon Gee Dillon Gee

    The Mets appear to be heading towards using a six-man rotation after Dillon Gee returns on Saturday.

  12. A Rays affiliate planned, and then cancelled, “A-Rod Juice Box” night

    May 22, 2015, 4:47 PM EDT

    Alex Rodriguez Getty Images

    The Yankees firmly believe that the only people allowed to disparage Alex Rodriguez are the Yankees.

  13. Red Sox call up Rusney Castillo, demote Jackie Bradley Jr.

    May 22, 2015, 3:45 PM EDT

    Rusney Castillo AP AP

    Castillo is starting tonight in right field.

  14. Casey Janssen is healthy, ready to make his Nationals debut

    May 22, 2015, 2:50 PM EDT

    Casey Janssen Getty Images

    Janssen was signed for $5 million to replace Tyler Clippard as the Nationals’ primary setup man.

  15. Barry Bonds would like to see you smile

    May 22, 2015, 2:30 PM EDT

    Bonds

    When I see you smile, Barry, I can face the world. You know I can do anything. When I see you smile, I see a ray of light.

  16. Will Smith suspended for eight games for the foreign substance on his arm

    May 22, 2015, 1:30 PM EDT

    will smith substance arm

    But Major League Baseball’s silliness about these kinds of infractions, however, will continue on unabated.

  17. Quote of the Day: Freddie Freeman inadvertently illustrates the silliness of the foreign substance rules

    May 22, 2015, 11:03 AM EDT

    Will Smith Getty Images

    Paraphrased: “Smith should be way less obvious about the fact that he’s trying to keep us safe!”

  18. Blue Jays shut down rookie Devon Travis with shoulder injury

    May 22, 2015, 10:47 AM EDT

    devon travis getty Getty Images

    Travis has been a huge bright spot for Toronto this season.

  19. Baseball needs beer girls. And a few other things.

    May 22, 2015, 10:30 AM EDT

    Tokyo Dome

    At least that’s what Molly Knight reports from Japan, and I’m inclined to agree.

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. D. Travis (3901)
  2. J. Hamilton (3391)
  3. R. Castillo (3245)
  4. J. Garcia (3207)
  5. L. McCullers (3149)
  1. H. Ryu (2974)
  2. C. Dickerson (2951)
  3. J. Reyes (2951)
  4. Y. Puig (2920)
  5. J. Werth (2872)