1. Edwin Encarnacion — Cleveland Indians
The batting stance looks familiar, but it still hurts to see Edwin Encarnacion in that jersey, especially that jersey.
EE will now walk the parrot as a Cleveland Indian. In fact, he already has as he homered in his season debut for the Tribe.
Discarded by the Cincinnati Reds, the Blue Jays acquired EE as a necessary piece to trade Scott Rolen for Josh Roenicke and Zach Stewart. After Oakland picked him up on waivers and then was granted free agency, he signed with Toronto and made a little history in the process.
Encarnacion was a huge part of the Blue Jays success the past five seasons, breaking out in 2012 with 42 HR and 110 RBI and he never looked back. The mild-mannered Dominican was a three-time All Star and finished in the top 15 in MVP voting four times. He leaves the Blue Jays third in franchise HR (239), sixth in RBIs (679), fourth in slugging percentage (.522) and OPS (.878). He ended one game shy of 1,000 in a Toronto uniform, but certainly one of the most productive.
Some will wish him well in Cleveland, and some will lump in with the rest of the Indians, with whom the Blue Jays fans have no love lost. Either way, Encarnacion will be doing what he does best for the next three years at Progressive Field.
He returns to the Rogers Centre from May 8-10, where he’s certain to get a mixture of boos and cheers, but I’m sure the ovation will rise above, even if we will cry when he hammers a classic long ball to left-centre field…. for the opposing team.