Edwin Encarnacion came into the 2014 season having established himself as one of the best power hitters in the game over the past couple of season. In 2013 he hit 36 home runs, drove in 104 runs and walked more than he stuck out.
Edwin has made an incredible transformation from the player that Jays fans loved to hate, to the one that they now love. He's gone from a guy that was lost on waivers and reacquired off waivers to an All-Star.
His 2013 season ended a bit early, when he had surgery on his wrist, we hoped it wouldn't cause him a slow start to this season.
In our community projection, I guess that Edwin would hit
. 290/.380/.540 in 150 games, 35 home runs, 105 RBI
I was off by some:
Year G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS OPS+ 2014 128 477 75 128 27 2 34 98 2 0 62 82 .268 .354 .547 .901 150
Provided by "Baseball-Reference.com":
Both Fangraphs and Baseball Reference has him at a 3.6 WAR making him worth $19.7 million to the Jays.
Edwin had a .389 wOBA and 150 wRC+..
Compared to 2013 Edwin walked less (11.4%, down from 13.2) and struck out more (15.1%, up from 10.0%). His line drive rate was down (16.4%, down from 21.6), ground balls up a tiny bit (36.4%, up from 35.1) and his fly balls were up (47.2%, up from 43.3). More of his fly balls left the park (18.2%, up from 17.6).
His BABIP was .260, up from .247 last year, but down from his career average of .273.
First the second year in a row Edwin hit right-handed pitchers (.270/.349/.560) somewhat better than left-handers (.263/.375/.495). Well, better is a personal opinion....you might prefer the better OBP he had against lefties.
He was better at home (.281/.366/.595) than on the road (.248/.323/.450).
With RISP Edwin hit .260/.358/.567.
In the first half of the season he hit (.277/.368/.591), in the second half (.248/.323/.450).
By month Edwin hit:
April: .250/.333/.413 with 2 home runs and 15 RBI.
May: .281/.369/.763 with 16 home runs and 33 RBI.
June: .305/.394/.589 with 7 home runs and 17 RBI.
July: .267/.421/.533 with 1 home run and 5 RBI in 5 games.
August: .170/.241/.340 with 2 home runs and 7 RBI in 14 games.
September: .292/.367/.510 with 6 home runs and 21 RBI.
If every month would have been May......
On defense, Edwin played 80 games at first base. Fangraphs had him at a -.9.7 UZR/150, slightly better than his -10.8 mark for 2013. He made 8 errors at the position, giving him a .988 fielding average, worse than the league average of .992. I thought he was ok first base, but clearly the numbers say he isn't.
He played 46 games at DH (in part because of hamstring issues that seemed to plague him most of the season) and 2 in left field (which I hope will never happen again).
As a base runner, Fangraphs has him at 1.1 runs better than the average base runner. I'm a bit surprised about that, he seemed to be having a lot of troubles running, for much of the season. He does seem to pick his spots well and does go first to third pretty good.
His favorite team to hit against? He hit .375/.545/.958 with 4 home runs and 7 RBI in 7 games against the Royals. He was also very good against the Red Sox, hitting .319/.385/.723 with 5 home runs, and 16 RBI in 12 games.
His least favorite team to face? Well, he had 3 terrible games against the Cardinals, with just a single and a walk in 12 PA.
Edwin's longest hitting streak was 11 games. His longest streak without a home run was 19 games (right off the season of the season).
Edwin is one of my favorite players. He does seem to be one that is effected by the hard surface at Rogers, but that's balanced by the fact that he hits better at Rogers. Fans do sometimes get on him for not running out everything as hard as he can, personally, I'm happier if he picks his spots and keeps healthy enough to stay in the lineup. I do have some worry that, if we don't re-sign Adam Lind, if Eddie can stand up to playing first base every day. Getting him off the field and getting him a rest in the DH spot seems to be a necessity.
Encarnacion is moving up the Blue Jays offensive leader boards. He's now 16 in bWAR, a couple more seasons and he'll be in the top 10. He's 4th in slugging average, 7th in home runs (give him a couple of season and he should be number 3), 13th in RBI (another good season would have him 6th).
He turns 32 on January 7th and we have him under contract for 2 more seasons (we have a $10 million team option for him in 2016, but unless he does a lot of damage to himself with fireworks, there is no way the team won't exercise his option). So the clock is running. If he has a couple more seasons like his last 3, he'll be worth a fair amount of money on the free agent market. I doubt he'll come so cheaply when his next contract rolls around. If we are going to make the playoffs with him and Bautista in the middle of the order, we better get on it now.