Sunday, July 5, 2009

Chavez a pleasant surprise

Raul Chavez deserves a lot of credit for the way he's performed this year for the Jays. Given his rather underwhelming stats in his 11 year career, I, and I'm sure many others, expected him to flop much like Jason Phillips and Sal Fasano did previously as the backup catcher for Toronto.

Chavez has provided exceptional defense behind the plate, throwing out 50% of would be base stealer's, but most impressively, has swung a good stick. In his first two at bats Sunday, Chavez has doubled, driving in a run and scoring twice. Midway through the contest, he has 2 HR, 8 RBI, with a .282 average in 26 games this season.

After narrowly missing out on making the Jays opening day roster, Chavez could've pursued work elsewhere, but instead reported to AAA Las Vegas. It's ended up being a smart decision, because veteran backstop Michael Barrett went down in April, allowing Chavez to head north of the border.

He has played more of late in the wake of Rod Barajas' nagging hamstring injury, and has continued his strong play. He deserves his due. Just as I'm tying this he threw out another runner. That's 12 runners caught stealing in 23 attempts.

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