It’s Deja Vu Again, Adrian Gonzalez Is The Unsung Hero Of 2016

First things first. Adrian Gonzalez is so cool, he’s got nicknames in two languages. He’s even had a nickname bestowed upon him by none other than the venerable Vin Scully.

Gonzalez is a star in MLB and world-class competition. Fans of multiple teams – even rivals – love him. Teammates and opposing pitchers respect him. The man’s personal home run routines even show up in video games.

All of this was earned, in much the same way that he’s earned his bad-ass lieutenant’s credentials in the Dodgers clubhouse  – by going out there and getting the job done. At the age of 33, Gonzalez has played in every game this season.  Since day one of the 2016 campaign, he has quietly and consistently been the Butter and Eggs man for the Dodgers.

Chase Utley is getting a lot of Dodgers Nation love because of his outstanding defense and hot bat. Yasiel Puig is taking all the screen time with his unbelievable plays in the field, and Justin Turner is being immortalized as a chia pet. All of that aside, make no mistake about it, this team has climbed to the top of the NL West on the shoulders of Adrian Gonzalez.

The same thing happened last season when he came out of Spring Training like gang busters. Gonzo was unconscious. He was hitting home runs almost every night, and setting major league records to boot.

This year, the home run power, while not gone, has been a bit subdued. That said, he has quietly been taking care of business daily. I clicked on the Dodgers’ ESPN stats page to check on team leaders, and who’s ever-lovin’ smile do you think is splashed in photos across the leader’s stats line? Yup, you know who.

Adrian Gonzalez is leading the Dodgers in batting average (.351), home runs (3, and tied with Joc Pederson), On Base Percentage (.417), hits (26), and the big one, the one that is the reason Vin Scully named him the Butter and Eggs man, RBI’s (15).

Time and time again, when the Dodgers needed a clutch hit and Gonzalez was at the plate, the man delivered. With Captain Clutch on crutches, Adrian Gonzalez has become El Capitan Clutch. Need a key hit in a big situation? Need some runners driven in? Gonzalez has consistently come through in every series this year.

That’s why it’s so hard for manager Dave Roberts to take Gonzalez’s bat out of the lineup and  give him a rest. Sit Adrian and you risk losing out on two or more precious runs – and the Dodgers’ pitching staff needs all the runs it can get.

So go ahead and wave bananas around. Adrian Gonzalez will steadily continue to make deliveries.

 

Oscar Martinez

Oscar Martinez

I was born in the shadow of Dodger Stadium and immediately drenched in Dodger Blue. Chavez Ravine is my baseball cathedral, Vin Scully was the golden voice of summer all my life, and Tommy Lasorda remains the greatest Dodgers manager ever. My favorite things are coffee, beer, and the Dodgers beating the Giants. I also blog about my baseball card hobby at All Trade Bait, All the Time.

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15 thoughts on “It’s Deja Vu Again, Adrian Gonzalez Is The Unsung Hero Of 2016

  1. AGon. The Trade. Can’t talk about it.

    I just realized something, the Dodgers have not won a game against any team over .500.

    1. Which means we lost 7 games to teams that are playing .500 or less. So the equatistical comparative would be 1.55 X the derivative, or 10.85. So, our record is actually 9-10. The math works, trust me.

  2. Some people want to trade Agon, but the same people, under estimate Agon, and what he means to the team. Would you want anyone else up, when you need a RBI?

  3. For some reason some see something outside of the game that make them hold on to a dislike of a player for who knows why? At the time when Loney was still the 1B I wouldn’t of traded him for anybody but soon I conceded AGon was superior. I guess they have to be Dodgers before they’re allowed hero status with me. There were several who were unable to see Turner for the player he’s proved himself to be all the while of him being a working part of the mix. I had my dislikes for HOF Sutton and can’t explain but any liking of Garvey sure wasn’t the reason. My dislikes for both those guys wasn’t for their play but they both brought poison. Or so it appeared to me.

  4. I don’t think I care for this all right lineup stuff. I know I don’t like those extreme infield shifts. And I hate the DH. All the fixing things that were never broke isn’t way it’s supposed to evolve.

  5. Disappointing loss but CK going tomorrow night.

    Not sure about Stanton being over rated. He’s got 11 HR against the Dodgers in 30 games and he’s got 7 HR in 16 games @ Chavez Ravine.

    Wouldn’t mind having him in our lineup.

  6. The jury about Yasmani in a full season is still out…..
    I’m 71. Haven’t played the bases kinda ball in 30 years.
    Woulda caught that one bare-handed with the left,
    while wavin’ to kids in the stands with my right:-).

    And I continue my skepticism about the new manager.
    Not disbelief…just skepticism.

    The Candy-Store Kids plan: have the playoffs filled with
    sub -.500 teams (new analytics; I’ll ‘splain later, Lucy).
    Dodgers in a cakewalk….

  7. I think Grandal wasn’t sure where the little wall was, and that is why he missed it, because he usually does really well, around the back stop, and actually made a great catch, not to long ago. Also there was a misplay by Puig, when he slipped, and fell down, that also cost us a run.

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