The Toronto Blue Jays inconsistency continues along with the curse of the Seattle Mariners. But to look on the brighter side of things, we’ve witnessed a turnaround in Alejandro Kirk with his offense.
Kirk had four hits against the Mariners on July 22nd, really doing everything he could to try to help the Jays win. It was close but no cigar as the Jays lost 9-8. Sooner or later, his game had to turn around. Slumps don’t last forever and let’s hope that his success continues and that he continues to prove himself as a valuable asset to the Jays. Here are three reasons why we shouldn’t underestimate Alejandro Kirk.
Three Reasons Why We Shouldn’t Overlook Alejandro Kirk
He Doesn’t Strikeout A lot
A player’s ability to maintain focus at the plate and avoid strikeouts is a tough skill. But Kirk has seemed to master it. He has one of the lowest strikeout rates in MLB and is currently sitting at 11.4%. This is a strong skill that Kirk carries and is something that shouldn’t be overlooked and that provides value.
He’s Providing Impact
Looking specifically at the game on Saturday, he went four for five in the game which was quite impressive. Evidently, the four hits represent his bat starting to spark up. While it would have been helpful if at least one of his hits had been a double as all his hits were singles that didn’t exactly produce a lot of runs they showcased his offensive transformation.
Kirk is more susceptible to hitting singles but at the end of the day, getting on base is what really matters. Following the All-Star Break, his batting has improved along with his slash line. His age also carries an important factor (24 years old) as he has a lot of room to grow as a player. Kirk provided seven hits combined in the game against the San Diego Padres on July 20th and on July 22nd against the Mariners. Evidently, these are all positive indicators of the recent impact that he’s provided for the Jays.
It is inevitable that Jays fans have projected better offense from Kirk, but his drought has been made up by strong defense as a catcher. He had a progressively slow start to the season that was negatively affected by Alek Manoah and his poor pitching. But Kirk has bounced back with framing pitches. It showcases a lot when a player is able to bounce back from adversity. Not to mention, he was ranked top five last season and is ranking around the top 10 currently.
Another factor to carry in is the discussion regarding the comparison of Gabriel Moreno and Kirk. Overall, both Moreno and Kirk carry strong qualities as catchers. While Moreno is effective at throwing out runners, Kirk surpasses Moreno’s ability with his framing and blocking. These are two measurable attributes that make him a stronger catcher.
The Little Engine That Could!
Kirk represents a lot of promise and quantifies as an underrated player for the Jays. It has been exciting to see him breakout for the Jays and his recent offensive spark has highlighted that his game far surpasses his small size. He represents versatility as a player who can provide strong defense and also be there to provide impact through his contact swing. He is good at slicing the ball to the far left field and having his lefty bat is without doubt a luxury. He has a beautiful swing and although he isn’t a home run hitter, the home runs he’s driven have been significant, especially the home run he hit in the shut-out game against the Padres.