2012 Blue Jays: Adam Lind, David Cooper, Edwin Encarnacion

15 02 2013

Over the next few days, I’m going to post some random thoughts about the 2012 Blue Jays. If I get around to it, I might write about the newbies too, but I don’t know much about them yet.

Adam Lind‘s 2009 season is beginning to resemble a mirage, or perhaps a legend. Expecting him to repeat that year is the baseball equivalent of searching for the Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine or the lost continent of Atlantis. But, when Adam has a good month or so, it’s hard not to believe that maybe, just maybe, the illusion is real. Then, he  injures his back again or resumes his futile attempts to hit left-handed pitching, and reality intrudes. I don’t think he’ll be of any use, but maybe the gold is out there, who knows?

David Cooper‘s problem is that he doesn’t do anything particularly well. He hits for an okay average, but doesn’t have significant power, significant speed, or significant defensive abilities. For a player to have a career as a reserve, it helps to have at least one thing that you do really well. (Compare Cooper with Rajai Davis, who isn’t as good a player, but is an excellent runner.) Cooper’s best hope for playing time is if Lind falls into a well and can’t get out, and the Jays don’t decide to move Bautista to first or something.

Edwin Encarnacion‘s career path proves that players do better when they’re not asked to do things they’re not really capable of. While he’s fast enough and has a good enough arm, he doesn’t react quickly and appears to be more strong than graceful, which means he can’t really play third base. Eventually, the Jays figured out that they were better off not making him do what he can’t do and focusing on the things that he can do – namely, hit the ball a very long way at astonishingly regular intervals. 2012 was quite an accomplishment for a man once waived out of the league.

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