How weird is it to see Edwin Encarnción in a Cleveland jersey?
I turned on the game just as he hit his first home run of the season. The entire time all I could think was why is he not in a Blue Jays uni?
The swing, the sound of the ball off the bat and the signature Edwin trot around the bases was all familiar, but at the same time it felt incredibly weird.
It really wasn’t anyone’s fault that he signed in Cleveland. Sure the Jays front office may have been a little hasty in moving on from EE, but at the same time they offered him the best contract and he decided to test the free agent waters.ADVERTISEMENT
Instead the Blue Jays signed a combo of Kendrys Morales and Steve Pearce to play first base and to be the designated hitter as well as the already signed Justin Smoak.
If last year is any indication, Justin Smoak will spend most of his time on the bench and it’s deserved.
He only hit .217 in 299 plate appearances while striking out 112 times…ouch that hurt just writing that.
Steve Pearce is more than capable of playing full-time first base and I suspect by the all-star break he will be.
Morales on the other hand will certainly be the Blue Jay’s designated hitter for the season.
Pearce is by no means the best possible option at first (cough cough Edwin), but he’s a career .255 hitter with decent pop and playing in the Rogers Centre for 81 games won’t hurt.
Morales, in my opinion was a really good signing even though it all but signaled the end with EE and he should have a very good year at the plate with all things considered.
He hit 30 home runs last year while driving in 93 runs and only struck out 120 times in 558 at bats.
His defense is probably the biggest hole in his game so I don’t think we’ll see him play a ton of first base this season, but I’m sure Gibby will throw him out there a few times especially when they’re playing in the National League.
With all that said, I can’t wait to watch another year of baseball and hopefully another post-season that involves the Jays!