Now we’re really getting into the territory of real disappointment, at least in terms of what we were hoping to see in 2019 from some of the Blue Jay starters.
Teoscar Hernandez was more or less handed the everyday role in left field, and after spending a good chunk of his offseason working on his defensive play in winter ball, he looked like he was going to be able to lock down the job.
Except that instead of struggling in the outfield, now he couldn’t hit enough to keep himself in the lineup.
He was hitting .189/.262/.299 when he was demoted to Buffalo on May 15th, but he’s been a little better since being recalled on June 5th. Oddly enough, he’s been playing centre field for the most part and doing a reasonable job of it, but he also had to leave Monday’s game with a reported wrist sprain after crashing into the outfield wall.
The reason I include Hernandez on this list is because this was the season he was supposed to grab a job in this lineup for the foreseeable future. Last year the question wasn’t so much about whether he could hit enough to contribute, but whether he was capable of covering an outfield corner well enough to justify having him in the lineup as a long-term piece. Now I’m really not sure how he’s going to fit in with this rebuild, even if he’s been a lineup regular lately.
As long as his injury from last night isn’t serious, I would suspect that Hernandez will get ample opportunity throughout the rest of this season, and hopefully he’ll be able to put the rough start behind him. So far he’s been worth -0.2 according to baseballreference.com, and -0.3 as a defender. That said, he’s shown the ability to be an asset as a hitter in the past, and the Jays will hope he can find that form again before the opportunity in Toronto passes him by.