If nothing else, these last eight days have been the time of the catcher. Offensive mashing by those who handle the tools of ignorance (Egads! a cliche!) have been happening all over baseball. This Fan has watched decades of baseball and can't remember a week like it. Ever.
We of course have to start with the Blue Jays and one John Buck. Buck has hit 78 career homers in 2005 at bats or roughly one homer per 26 at bats. In his last ten games, he's hit seven and has eight for the season in 89 at bats or one homer per 11.5 at bats. In those last ten games, he has a three homer game and a two homer game. Buck now has 22 hits on the season. Eight have been homers and eight have been doubles. That's 54 total bases in just 22 hits or 2.45 total bases per hit. Amazing.
The Mets are having fun with their catchers too. Henry Blanco has seven hits in his last fifteen at bats and raised his average to .300. He also hit the game winning (and walk off) homer on Saturday. His partner, Rod Barajas, who caught for Toronto, if you'll remember, had two homers on Friday to give him nine for the year in just 82 at bats. Once again, here is a catcher that has averaged one homer per 26 at bats currently going at a clip of one homer per 9 at bats this year.
Stories in the New York papers stated that Jorge Posada pleaded with Joe Girardi to get in the line up in Saturday's games. Who can blame him. Girardi mumbled something about giving Posada's calf another day, but secretly, he was riding Cervelli as long as he could ride him. And who could blame him? Cervelli has batted safely eight times in his last thirteen at bats and is batting a guady .395. Want to bet that a bunch of Yankees are calling Jorge, Mr. Pipp?
The Twins are the only team in history that has a catcher that has won three batting titles. He's got another shot this year as Mauer is in the high .300's. But he got hurt. No problem. Wilson Ramos came up from the minors and got seven hits in his first nine at bats in the majors. Butera didn't want to be left out so he got two RBIs in the nightcap of the double header on Saturday.
How about Ivan Rodriguez? He had to go 0-4 on Friday to cool his average to .383. That's the first time he's been under .400 all season!
Carlos Ruiz for the Phillies has six hits in his last twelve at bats and is now batting .317.
John Jaso is getting more playing time for the Bay Rays because he is hitting .314 with a .977 OPS.
How about the Giants? Bengie Molina has thirteen hits in his last eleven games and is batting .325. Their back up catcher? Eli Whiteside is batting .385 with an OPS of 1.200. Sheesh.
Want more? Ryan Hanigan is batting .409 for the Reds and had five RBIs on Saturday and now has fifteen RBIs in 17 games. Geovany Soto went hitless on Saturday but is still hitting .349 with an OPS over 1 and before Saturday had six hits in his last ten at bats. Jason Jaramillo had three hits for the Pirates Saturday and is now batting .280. Yadier Molina went hitless on Saturday but is still hitting .304 and before Saturday had ten hits in his last fifteen at bats. Jason Kendell has been starting for the Royals nearly every game and is batting a healthy .291 with a .377 OBP.
There are still some teams struggling at catcher like the Rangers and the Mariners. But over all, it's been an amazing offensive run by catchers around the majors.