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Who’s Hot, Who’s Cold: Blue Jays Batters

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Taking a look at the Jays offense over the last two weeks.

Boston Red Sox v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

I haven’t done this for a while. It always seems there have been other things going on lately.

Over the past two weeks, the Jays were 11-4. The batters have hit .272/.333/.472 with 19 home runs, averaging 5.3 runs per game, slightly above their season average of 5.19 runs per game.

Hot

George Springer: Started all 15 games. Hit .379/.448/.862 with 6 home runs, 18 RBI, 8 walks and 17 strikeouts.

Since he’s been AL Player of the Week for each of the last two weeks, yeah he’s been hot. 9 starts in CF, 6 as DH. He gave off a very Jose Bautista vibe on his game-winning home run. It seemed to be such an emotional series, ar less emotional than Bautista’s bat, but after the Boston series, I felt kind of emotionally exhausted. I haven’t decided what I think of his defense in CF yet. He had that just fantastic play a couple of weeks ago, but on the whole, he seems average out there. His UZR number (-19.1) is terrible, but UZR needs more playing time to kind of balance out.

Reese McGuire: Played 12 games, starting 9. He hit .300/.382/.467 with 2 doubles, 4 walks and 4 strikeouts.

Kind of surprisingly one of those 12 games, he was a pinch-runner. He’s thrown out 3 of 7 base stealers over that time. He’s been pretty good with the bat lately, and he’s been good with the glove too. Platooning him is a good idea. He’s had a .485 OPS vs. LHP and .760 vs. RHP. I really didn’t think he’d see him playing for Toronto this year, but he’s been pretty good. It is too bad that his entire existence as Blue Jay is overshadowed by one moment.

Teoscar Hernandez: Played in all 15, started 14. He hit .308/.345/.481 home runs 2, 1 walk, and 16 strikeouts.

Started 10 games in RF, 3 in left, and 1 at DH. Hitting much the way he has all season. His strikeout rate is down some from last year, 25.4% from 30.4 last year, continuing a happy trend. But his isolated power is way down too .199, from .289. I feel his defense has improved, there are fewer of the ‘watch the ball round to the wall and pick it up’ plays. He seems to be hustling to cut them off more.

Alejandro Kirk: Started 6 games. Hit .294/.350/.412, with 2 doubles, 2 walks, and 5 strikeouts.

Reese has been good, but I would like them to play Kirk more. I love to watch him hit. He seems to catch and throw fine.

Breyvic Valera: Played in 7 games, starting 5. Hit .316/.350/.368, 1 double, 1 walk, and 0 strikeouts.

He started 1 game at second, the other 4 at third. Kind of marginally hot, or maybe hot for how I expected him to hit. Hot might be overstating it, but he’s been good. I mean, I’d still like to see Kevin Smith, but I guess bringing Breyvic up (and he was hitting well for Buffalo) is easier. They know if it doesn’t go well, or if they need a roster spot, he can be DFAed. He’s not really part of our future.

Cold

Vladimir Guerrero: Started 14 of 15 games. Hit .268/.328/.464 with 3 home runs, 4 walks, 7 strikeouts, and 1 steal.

DHed twice. Cold for him, but pretty decent numbers really, but for him it is cold. We are so lucky to get to watch him every day. Buck and Pat talk him up as a Gold Glove candidate. I can’t see that, but he’s been as good as we could have hoped.

Lourdes Gurriel: Started 11 games. Hit .200/.282/.371 with 1 home run, 3 walks, and 8 strikeouts.

Started 2 games at first base, and one at DH, the rest in LF. When you play defense as he does, you gotta hit better. He has a great personality, and he doesn’t seem to carry a bad at-bat with him into the dugout. Being a good teammate is worth something.

Randal Grichuk: Played in 14 games, starting 12. Hit .231/.333/.333 with 1 home run, 5 walks, and 7 strikeouts.

Started 6 games in CF and 8 in RF. As always, start the season hot, no one will notice when you turn cold. Buck and Pat still talk about his RBI count, but he has hit better with RISP, .299/.331/.547 on the season. I’m not a big believer that this is an ability. If you could hit like this, why just do it some of the time.

Santiago Espinal: Played in 12 games, starting 9. He hit .179/.281/.286 with 1 home run, 4 walks, 4 strikeouts, and 1 steal.

Played all the games at third. He has been hitting so well, that I didn’t notice that he’s had a tough couple of weeks. He is so likable. His defense has been great. I still don’t like him as an every day 3B, but I’m ok with putting him out there to see if he can keep up the batting average.

In Between

Marcus Semien: Started all 15 games. Hit .268/.288/.518 with 2 homers, 2 walks, 12 strikeouts, and 1 steal.

Started 2 games at short, the rest at 2B. His walk rate has dropped through the floor since moving to the 3 spot. I wonder if that is a mental thing about thinking he’s now in an RBI spot or if it is just a small sample size thing. His defense has been very good. If he was staying around for a few years I would switch him and Bo, but that won’t happen on a one-year contract nor would it happen mid-season.

Bo Bichette: Started 14 of 15 games. Hit .265/.302/.469 with 3 home runs, 3 walks, 11 strikeouts, and 4 steals.

He DHed in one game. I’ll be curious to see if he plays tomorrow. He can drive you crazy. Buck and Pat talk about his two-strike approach. To me, his two-strike approach seems to be ‘swing at everything’. Sometimes it is better to take a walk if it is offered. But he does have some long at-bats. After two strikes he is hitting .200/.235/.243, so it doesn’t seem to be working out all that well. Basically, no power after two strikes. There is a value to fouling of pitches, but if the pitch is well off the plate. why not take it as a ball? Fielding? UZR has him at -9.8. His error rate is way above career numbers. I don’t know why that is happening.

Corey Dickerson: Started 6 games. .278/.350/.389 with 2 doubles, 2 walks, no strikeouts, 1 steal, and 1 caught.

This seems to be how he hits. I’d like more power out of a corner outfielder, but if he gets on base 35% of the time. I’d be happy. When he was younger he showed more power. If he could find some of that again I’d be happier.

On the IL

Cavan Biggio: Played in 6 games, starting 5. Hit .111/.200/.111 with 2 walks and 6 strikeouts.

It seems like he has been dealing with a neck issue most of the season. He might not be out long.

Danny Jansen: He’s been running a little bit, taking batting practice, and catching a bit. When he can run full-out, he’ll get a rehab assignment