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Blue Jays mid-term report card: Grade Kevin Pillar’s first half

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MLB: Houston Astros at Toronto Blue Jays John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Pillar came into spring training saying all the right things, about taking a better approach at the plate, swinging at strikes, taking walks when they are offered, all that good stuff.

I mocked it a bit. I have a hard time believing in players making big changes in their approach mid-career. But, really, Kevin didn’t need a huge change, a slight bump in walks, a little better choice in pitches to swing at, a little better contact. Small improvements, those I believe in.

Anyway, the season started and Kevin was a whole different player. He was hitting so well (and Devon Travis wasn’t) that they moved him into the lead off spot. On May 14th his OBP was .369. We thought we might have a very good lead off hitter, though some of us remembered that Pillar has always been a streak hitter.

Things have kind of gone down hill from there. In June he hit .212/.255/.337.

He has 21 walks, 3 short of his total for last year.

For the season, he has a .256/.306/.418, pretty close to his 2016 numbers (.266/.306/.376).

Defensively, he hasn’t looked as spectacular as in the past. I don’t know if he has just learned not to make every play look amazing. There are some players that just have that ability to make all plays look good.

Poll

For the first half, I’d give Kevin Pillar an

This poll is closed

  • 2%
    A
    (18 votes)
  • 9%
    B+
    (72 votes)
  • 25%
    B
    (193 votes)
  • 24%
    B-
    (187 votes)
  • 16%
    C+
    (125 votes)
  • 11%
    C
    (85 votes)
  • 5%
    C-
    (39 votes)
  • 2%
    D+
    (18 votes)
  • 0%
    D
    (7 votes)
  • 0%
    D-
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    F
    (7 votes)
756 votes total Vote Now