After raising his batting average to .295 after batting .365 in the month of May with just two games left, it's safe to say that baseball fans who doubted the signing of Edgar Renteria are becoming more and more silent as time goes by.
Not only is Renteria hitting .365 in May, but he's hitting .351 against left-handed pitchers this season. In the last seven days Renteria has 16 hits in 24 at-bats which translates into a .667 batting average. In those seven days Renteria has also hit two home runs, including a grand slam against the Yankees in the 17-1 massacre. Speaking of the Yankees, he's the new "Yankee Killer," as he's hitting .459 against the evil empire, and has three of his four home runs against them. He hasn't had more at-bats against a single team than New York, either.
One stat that is surprising to me is his batting average in Fenway Park: .239. What's Renteria's problem at Fenway? Is it the pressure maybe? Renteria is a right-handed hitter in the best righty hitter's park in the majors. He should be hitting .328 at home, not on the road like he currently is.
So are Red Sox doubters off of his back? I, for one, was never on his back. I knew he would produce and be a force to reckon with in the Sox lineup. I didn't think he would struggle so badly so early, though. I thought he would have a positive impact from the get-go, and struggle at times like every major league baseball player, but not struggle like he did. He seems to have turned the page, though, and is back on his normal pace.
With all this talk about Renteria, it makes me remember our former shortstop Orlando Cabrera. I was curious to see how he's performing this year, so I checked out his stats up to today. They aren't very impressive, as he's batting .240, with a .302 on-base percentage, three home runs and 12 runs batted in. And, as a complete opposite to Renteria, can't hit lefties as he's batting .196 against them.
Cabrera is turning it around, though, a lot like Renteria is doing. In the past seven days Cabrera is hitting .346 in 26 at-bats. It's not Renteria-like, but it's still very good compared to what he's been doing all season long.
We can go further back in the time capsule and bring up an old and maybe unforgettable memory in Nomar Garciaparra. But should we? I'm sure you all know by now that Garciaparra has been on the disabled list since April 21 and has only appeared in 14 games this season. Up to that time? A .157 batting average in 51 at-bats.
Even if Sox fans aren't off Renteria's back quite yet, it could be a lot worse if we had either of our last shortstops in place of Renteria.
As the great Jedi Master Yoda would say, "fortunate we are."