Troy Tulowitzki has been a Blue Jay for the equivalent of half a season now.
He is batting fifth in the Jays’ lineup, because of track record and reputation, but his half-season worth of numbers is putting him among the bottom tier of major league shortstops.
In 246 regular season at bats with the Jays, Tulo is hitting .215, with a .309 on-base percentage and .362 slugging, for a .671 OPS. He’s hit nine home runs with 27 RBI in 65 games.
This season alone, Tulo’s .169 batting average ranks 30th out of 30 shortstops in the major leagues with at least 60 plate appearances. With 27 strikeouts in 99 plate appearances, he is second in the majors with a 27.3% strikeout rate, behind his replacement in Colorado, Trevor Story (36.1%). Tulo only struck out once in going 0-for-4 in Saturday’s loss, so that strikeout rate improved a bit.
He started 24 games in April, batting fifth in the order. He had a hit in 11 of 24 games, racking up 14 hits, but went hitless in 13 games. He’s had eight multiple-strikeout games and two multiple-hit games.
The track record says he’s a great hitter — a career .885 OPS in Colorado over 10 seasons and from 2009-14, his OPS was above .915 in five of six seasons. He finished fifth in NL MVP voting in 2009 and 2010.
I wonder how much longer Jays manager John Gibbons stick with Tulo behind Edwin Encarnacion in the No. 5 spot. He’s certainly not offering Encarnacion much protection. That might be a better spot for Michael Saunders if the Jays had an ideal leadoff hitter.
Tulowitzki’s defence has been first-rate, but the offensive player the Blue Jays traded for last July has yet to show up and in fact, he’s been outhit by Darwin Barney ( .294/.345/.490/.836) in Barney’s 51 at bats as a Blue Jay.
Yeah, Barney’s sample size is small, only 51 at bats.
But Tulo’s sample size keeps getting bigger, and not much better.