After experiencing the best of Eddie Rosario at the end of the 2021 season, Atlanta Braves are wondering when that version will return.
The Atlanta Braves got several great surprises in the second half of the 2021 season that led to a World Series, but perhaps none more surprising than Eddie Rosario.
When the Braves traded for Rosario he was hurt and we weren’t even sure when he would play or what he would look like when he did play.
Beginning that season in Cleveland, he was slashing just .254/.296/.389 in 78 games before getting injured. That was coming off a 2020 season in which he slashed .257/.316/.476.
But once healthy with the Braves, he became an instant impact player slashing .271/.330/.573 with 7 home runs in 33 games — the same number of home runs he had in 78 games with Cleveland.
And then came the postseason where he was 23-for-60 (.383), including an NLCS MVP performance where he was 14-25 with 3 home runs and 9 RBI in six games.
Braves — Where is that Eddie Rosario Now?
To expect that same level of Eddie Rosario over a full regular season is not fair and not logical.
He’s never been somebody with a high on-base percentage, but you do expect him to hit .260-.270 with 25-30 home runs with an OPS around .800.
Through just 15 games for the Braves in 2022, he’s slashing .068/.163/.091 with 10 strikeouts in 44 at-bats.
Even though the Braves are tops in the National League in home runs, they have several hitters struggling with the long ball — whether that be from the cool weather or changes to the baseball, home runs across the league are down right now.
But I think there is another reason/excuse for Eddie’s slow start, and it’s that he’s normally a slow starter.
Over his career, he’s slashing just .218/.260/.391 in March/April games. While I’m tired of giving excuses for the short Spring Training, I’m sure that’s a detriment to someone who is notoriously a slow starter.
His Baseball Savant page is not pretty — there is nothing there pointing towards a breakout or to suggest he’s had bad luck — he simply has not been good.
However, history is on his side, and it tells us that once he gets through the first month of a season, he’ll become the player we thought he would be.