For most major league players a stat line consisting of 26 home runs, 86 RBIs and a .907 OPS would be considered an above average season that would likely make you an all star and one of the top players at your position. Blue Jays Edwin Encarnacion has put up those numbers in less then 100 games so far and it couldn’t have been better timing for the slugger.
While the 2017 free agent class isn’t one to look down upon, the 2016 free agent class was loaded filled with a variety of talent at nearly every position. The highly anticipated 2016 class brought some fireworks with power arms and big bats, but the 2017 class could quietly pave its own way into a solid class.
Along with Yoenis Cespedes, Jose Bautista, and Josh Reddick, Encarnacion is apart of a heavy hitting class that should be paid nicely. The Dominican Republic native is 33 years old and hasn’t played in more then 150 games since 2012, but has quietly been a monster in a star studded lineup over the years.
According to MLB.com’s cumulative season predictor, Encarnacion is destined to post 41 home runs, 128 RBIs and an .901 OPS. Numbers like those are jaw dropping. In an age of power pitching, big bats like his are always needed.
With the Blue Jays fighting for a playoff berth, the production will need to keep up for Edwin Encarnacion in a power hitting lineup, but he’s shown no sign of slowing down.
A deal that could be linked to any Encarnacion contract is Chris Davis’ 7 year $161M from last off season. Both are sluggers who have bounced around from the outfield to first base. Edwin is three years older then Davis, but the production with the bat is still there. A seven year deal may be debatable for the length of any possible deal regarding Encarnacion but the annual average salary could hover right around the $17M mark that Davis got with re-signing with the Orioles.
“Big Papi” David Ortiz who of course is in his final year with the Boston Red Sox, recently found himself possibly in trouble for echoing about Enacrnacion being his replacement after he hangs it up this season. Even if Ortiz does get in trouble for those comments, staying in the division and hopping over to the Red Sox may not be bad move at all.
Jason Heyward’s monster deal from last year, eight years and $184M, is probably out of the question because of age and durability, but Encarnacion has made himself a very wealthy man barring any catastrophic bad play or injuries.
Whatever he decides to do he has made himself one of the top tier power hitters within the game of baseball who could transform a lineup with the monster bat that he possesses. Needless to say I think it would be a bit of an understatement to say anyone wouldn’t be want to be the agent of Edwin Encarnacion at year’s end.