Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Around the Horn: JD Drew

JD Drew has had five hundred or more plate appearances just once in his career [518, in 2004]. However, in that year, he hit .305, with 31 home runs, a .436 OBP and staggering .569 slugging percentage.

I can't lie, it kills me that Drew has yet to play for anywhere near the whole season in Boston [this year he had a career year in one unique stat: two epidurals instead of his usual one]. Drew's swing is a thing of beauty, all the more so because of the perfectly blank expression on his face after an at bat, regardless of outcome. Seriously, how do you have the exact same look on your face after striking out that you have doing a home run trot? As fragile as JD Drew seems at times, he earned his 2008 salary in the month of June alone. David Ortiz goes down, but Drew steps up and holds down the fort. I don't know about you, but I could not believe the how Drew was producing during Papi's absence. It made me wonder what the Sox could be with a healthy and producing Drew and Ortiz in the lineup at the same time.

This is a phenomenon we have yet to see, mostly because for most of 2007, Drew was dealing with the medical ordeal(s) or his young son, and never really hit his stride. In 2008, as we are all painfully aware, Drew was phenomenal while Papi was out, and then his back started acting up [for approximately the 249874th time in his career], and he sort of faded out down the stretch. Now Drew and Ortiz are both getting older, and they, like all players, will inevitably suffer some decline in their skill sets. The upcoming season might be Red Sox Nation's last best chance to see this unexpected, yet still epic, duo.

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