Edwin Encarnacion turns 41 today.
When we traded Scott Rolen to the Reds for Josh Roenicke, Zach Stewart and Edwin, no one would have guessed that Edwin would be the last one standing. But, of course, Edwin did spend three weeks as an Oakland A in the winter of 2010.
The fans didn’t exactly love Edwin for his first couple of years as a Jay. Fans tend to be impatient. We weren’t all fans of Jose Bautista right away, either. You would think we’d learned a little patience by now, especially with players with tons of power. To be fair to those that didn’t like him, his defense was awful at third base. He had his moments, including burning himself with fireworks on New Year’s Eve.
But Edwin turned his career around in 2012 and gave us five excellent seasons, putting up bWAR values of over four each year. He was fun to watch, showing more personality each season. Watching his reaction to fans throwing caps on the field when he hit the three home runs was great.
Most of us would say our favourite Edwin moment was the 2016 Wild Card winning home run against the Orioles. He hit four playoff homers for us.
I’ll admit to being very sad when he signed with Cleveland. I would have enjoyed watching him play with us for a few more years. After Cleveland, Edwin played with the Mariners, Yankees and White Sox.
After leaving the Jays, Edwin hit .241/.344/.489 with 114 home runs.
Edwin’s spot on our franchise leaderboard:
- 7th among position players in bWAR at 24.4.
- 4th in slugging average, at .522.
- 3rd in home runs at 239 (Vlad is still 3ish years away from catching him).
- 12th in games player at 999.
Edwin, Happy Birthday. Have a great day.
It is also Kevin Mench’s birthday. He turns 46 today. Kevin was half of the two-headed Mencherson monster that delighted Jays fans (very subtle sarcasm there, for those who weren’t following the team then) in 2008.
And Frank Menechino turns 53 today. Frank was a utility infielder for the Jays in 2004 and 2005. He had an excellent season, hitting .301/.400/.504 in 2004 and then a lesser season, hitting .216/.352/.345 in 2005, playing about 70 games each season. Frank was one of many that have come to us in trade from the A’s over the years.
So Happy Birthday, Kevin and Frank. I hope it is a good one.