The Toronto Blue Jays muscled out a very important win this afternoon against the defending American League pennant winners the Kansas City Royals. Edwin Encarnacion delivered an important home run in the fourth inning which brought the Jays long scoreless streak to an abrupt end. Because of this, short sighted fans of the team will become enamored with Encarnacion and continually refer to say he's broken out of his tail spin and once again can be counted on to provide timely offence. What people, and even people within the Blue Jays hierarchy fail to realize is that Edwin's mantra is inconsistency and we have the same story play out time and time again. This is my opinion in large part, but clear cut statistics validate my beliefs. From 2012 to the present, his batting average has slipped going from.280 to .272 to .268 to him currently gracing a .236 average. For a team that is supposedly "all in", and I could've certainly targeted this entry towards a flawed business plan but I will primarily focus on my frustrations with Encarnacion, what has he shown that he has the mentality and the ability to be a fourth hitter for a team that has American League East title aspirations? To be Mike Wilner blunt, he hasn't. We can't use injuries as an excuse because he's been one of the few Jays who have got off scot free. It comes down to attitude and desire, a similar sentiment that could be applied to Jose Bautista, but once again this is all about EE. Nothing drives me more crazy in baseball then a batter not running out a ground ball and Encarnacion makes this common place. Jose Reyes does his little arm twirl when getting a base hit, and a lot of the Jays have since followed suit, which unlike Gregg Zaun I happen to like because it pushes forward team cohesion but once again Edwin chooses not to cosign on the celebration. It's painfully clear that Encarnacion wants to swing that bat elsewhere and if you're Anthopoulos you try and make this happen because although has seventeen knockers, the rest of his game is abysmal so if you can get that coveted pitcher in exchange for him, do it immediately!
I guarantee some(most) will read this and will ask themselves, "what's wrong with seventeen homers"? On the surface, nothing as hitting nearly twenty homers before the all-star break is commendable, but when you're hitting one home run in say roughly every sixty at bats, fifty nine to be exact and provide NOTHING in between, Gibbons isn't getting the money's worth from the four hole. I will say this to anybody that will listen but I'm come to the point of futility with Edwin that I'd rather see Gibbons trot out Kevin Pillar, Dioner Navarro or Justin Smoak in the clean-up position until Edwin cleans up his act and starts acting like he gives a damn. Pillar specifically the player I would prefer batting fourth gives you honest at-bats and plays the game the right way, a versatile fielder and has a decent speed dimension. Just imagine this scenario, you deal Edwin Encarnacion to the Chicago White Sox(who need offence) for pitcher Jeff Samardzija. It's a win win for the Blue Jays in this proposed acquisition as we finally receive the ace that we so desperately need while getting rid of a player that we don't require. As a prefix to my proposed trade, I'm doubting the White Sox will sign off on such a trade if for no other reason then they're heating up and channeling their inner 2006 team and also I don't think Edwin is quite the player that would match up with Samardzija's hefty trade stock. However, after saying all of that this is the kind of trade them from the North should be focusing on. If this premise of a deal consummated, just imagine the thought of not having to play the Manny Ramirez-esque pertaining to his outfielding efforts Chris Colabello in the outfield, instilling him as the permanent Designated hitter. Addition by subtraction at it's finest. I unfortunately disconnected my self when on hold to speak with the Fan 590's infamous Mike Wilner, but this right here voices my deepest concern with the Blue Jays and if this goes on much longer, Edwin will be one of two players solely responsible for Manager John Gibbons undoing.