The Blue Jays signed Steve Pearce to a $12.5 million 2-year contract before last season. They signed him to be a lefty killer. Someone to platoon with Ezequiel Carrera.
As it turned out, he didn’t exactly kill lefties: he hit right-handers (.270/.329/.438) better than left-handers (.207/.293/.437).
The best laid plans....
He didn’t have a great season, but he did have some great moments, including 2 walk-off grand slams in less than a week.
Steve also missed a month with a calf injury and he missed the end of the season with a back injury, but he played 92 games, a mark that he’s reached only twice in his 12 year career.
This is year two of a two-year $12.5 million contract. Being 35 now, it is likely the last multi-year, large contract he’s going to get, so I hope he’s investing it well. It’s hard to imagine a team wanting him after this year. He’s not good enough defensively to want to have in the outfield and he doesn’t hit well enough to play first or DH on a regular bases. Years ago he would have been a good guy to have on the bench to pinch hit, but teams carry too many relievers to use one of their few bench spots for a pinch hitter.
His role this year? Platoon with Curtis Granderson in left and pinch hit, maybe occasionally play first base. I think, at some point, the team decides they would be better off with one of the outfielders currently in Buffalo, and he gets his release, unless they find a someone who wants to take him in trade. Or, they release Morales instead, but Kendrys would cost them more money.
I do kind of miss the old days of four man rotations and 5 (at most) pitchers in the pen, where you could do fun things like pinch hit and pinch run and there was a bit more for a manager to do, instead of just sending out a different reliever every inning. Yeah, I know, us old guys always like the old days better.
The choice between Teoscar Hernandez and Pearce, for the fourth outfielder spot was kind of an interesting one. Teoscar isn’t going to hit what Pearce would, but with more power and better defense. But, Pearce has a contract and Hernandez is better off playing everyday. Well, sort of better off, I’m sure he’d much rather be getting major league money than getting poverty level minor league money. I’m sure we’ll see Hernandez before the end of the season.
PECOTA figures Pearce to hit .255/.333/.446 with 12 home runs in 312 PA. I’m going to take the under on the PA. ZiPS figures .260/.330/.463 with 13 home runs in 318 PA.
If the over/under on Pearce’s PA is 250, I’d take the
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