Saunders, Tulowitzki on Hot Streaks
Saunders Leading the Way
The Toronto Blue Jays have to be thanking their lucky stars that Saunders is having a renaissance following an injury-plagued 2015. After a trade that almost sent him away, which would have let the Jays acquire Jay Bruce from the Cincinnati Reds, was nixed, it’s great to see the numbers he is putting up for Toronto.
He led the team in late June with an average of .296. He has seventy-four hits, forty runs scored, thirty-three RBI, a .372 OBP and a .944 OPS. He is top-five this year in most offensive categories for the Blue Jays. Saunders has also been a very good defensive player in the outfield. When he’s healthy, his defense is a nice compliment to that of Kevin Pillar and Jose Bautista.
The Victoria, British Columbia native has been hitting hot all season long, even when the Blue Jays were colder than ice earlier in the season. By June 27, his past fifteen games had seen him produce eleven runs, sixteen hits, six home runs, thirteen RBI, and a .302 batting average. No matter where manager John Gibbons puts Saunders in the batting order, he produces. That’s a good thing, as Gibbons on some nights throws the batting order in a blender and places every batter in what almost seems like random order.
Maybe the Jays management will think of giving him a contract extension before the season is through. Saunders’ resurgence will get him looks from many teams in the off-season, and he could potentially walk. It would be quite a shame if the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox picked him up. He’s definitely a good left fielder to have on a team. With the fans not trusting this teams management so far, it is going to be a large but important task to sign all the players they need to re-sign before free agency starts at the end of the year. Luckily for them, they have a whole summer left to make their decisions.
Tulo Picking Up the Pace
What ever Tulowitzki was told, or has done while he was away due to injury he needs to bottle that up and keep it for ever. Unlike Saunders who has been good all season long overall, Tulowitzky struggle out of the gate offensively like many Jays stars (not on defense though, he has been solid), but since he has returned from injury he has been lights out.
Since returning from injury on June 18, he has had fifty-three at-bats. In those at-bats, he has fourteen hits, six home runs, fourteen RBI, eight runs, a 1.172 OPS, and a .321 average. He’s produce those numbers in just seven games since returning from the disabled list.
If his numbers keep climbing like this, and he maintains this pace for the rest of the regular season, then the rest of the AL East should worry. The Jays are already a top-scoring team; with Tulo picking it up, the Jays offense could cause even more damage. Imagine having to face a batting order that includes Edwin Encarnacion, Josh Donaldson, a healthy Bautista, Pillar, Saunders, and Tulowitzki. That order will cause nightmares for some starters. That is an offensively fueled lineup. Jays fans are hoping that the players can continue to swing hot bats.