June 23, 2009
It's official: Lyle Overbay is back. And I'm as giddy as a school girl about it.
A .540 slugging percentage, and .939 OPS; both tops on the Blue Jays. Even better: a marvelous 146 OPS+.
And ... wait for it ... he's only grounded into four double plays.
There's more. In 174 at-bats (more than 100 fewer than regulars Marco Scutaro, Aaron Hill, Alex Rios, Vernon Wells and Adam Lind) Overbay has walked 36 times, trailing only Scoots. It's a virtue, all that patience.
Speaking of Scoots, he's strolled leisurely to first 48 times in 71 games (and once to second). I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that Marco will shatter his career high of 56 walks, set last year, in 146 games. What a fucking Scutaro. Love this guy.
But back to Lyle. He's having the type of June I wanted Vernon Wells to have: .300/.455/.620; a 1.075 OPS. Four home runs, four doubles, and 18 RsBI in 18 games.
And yet 93% of his at-bats this season have come from the seventh spot in the lineup.
I want to berate The Cito. I want him to free Lyle Overbay. But I can't. Somehow, Gaston's Jays, with Overbay batting seventh, are only a game behind the Yankees in the wild card standings. Cito's handed the ball to 11 different starting pitchers this season (remember Brian Burress?), V-Dub has one home run in seven weeks, and the team went to hell and back on a nine-game losing streak. Yet here they are. In the race.
I'm going to count my blessings. I'm simply going to be content with Overbay's production. Lord knows the Jays are going to need it the rest of the way. I'm on the same page as The Cito; let's not mess with a good thing.
Welcome back, Lyle.
UPDATE: Russ Adams is batting 1.000. Just saying ...