Good Edwin, Bad Edwin

Today we take a look at Edwin Encarnacion and try to figure out why he has become the media’s whipping boy when trying to find what has gone wrong with the Reds so far this season.

We wanted to take a look at how he compares to other third basemen in the National League.

Stat

Number

NL Rank

AVG

.282

7

OBP

.378

5

SLG

.553

5

OPS

.930

4

BABIP

.273

9

Edwin has done especially well in these categories. Only trailing the likes of Chipper Jones, David Wright, and Aramis Ramirez in these areas, and having an  OPS+ of 139, we don’t understand why Edwin has gotten a bum rap for his hitting. Edwin is also above league average in walks, on-base percentage, and slugging.  Even with runners in scoring position, Edwin ranks 4th among current NL third basemen at .278.

The negative stems from his errors and plays in the field. Committing 7 errors through Saturday April 26, he has almost reached the half way mark of his 2007 season total of 16. This would be reflected in his 0.68 WPA.

Seeing that Edwin is only 25 years old, we hope that he continues to improve and mature so that people won’t be so critical. Improving his defense should be his primary concern, but his hitting is something that will keep him around for a long time. For the time being, we back Edwin Encarnacion and feel good about him playing third base for many years.

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Jeff Brantley Is Not Clutch

Normally we feel bad for Jeff Brantley. Night in and night out he gets ragged on by fellow announcers on both TV and radio. George Grande (FSN Ohio), Thom Brennaman (Radio and FSN Ohio), and the grand poobah of Reds media Marty Brennaman (Radio) constantly tease him about his southern drawl and cowboy boots. We empathize with Mr. Brantley; we really do. We are tired of the cowboy references and wish they would stop and just call the game.

But on Wednesday night as the Reds looked as if they were going to go down to a second straight defeat, Edwin Encarnacion came to the plate and what transpired was absolutely hilarious.

We can only guess that his Mississippi Mudflap clouded his judgment if in fact “clutch” actually exists.