I’m not gonna sit here and tell you I wasn’t devastated when Yasiel Puig was traded to the Indians in a three-team deal that landed Cincinnati Trevor Bauer. It wasn’t because I was upset that Bauer was suddenly a Red, that was actually something that took away the sting a little bit. But there was still a void in my heart for a power hitting, exciting right fielder that we suddenly had no replacement for. Sure, guys like Philip Ervin and Jesse Winker have shown flashes of exceptional play, but Yasiel was Yasiel. They called him the Wild Horse for a reason. Whether he was crushing home runs, showcasing his arm from the warning track or trying to fight the entire Pirates organization, he was fun to watch.
In steps Aristides Aquino. What has he done? Oh, nothing much, just hit 7 home runs in his first 10 MLB games, including tonight’s three home run performance.
That not enough for you? How about this arm?
I’m not gonna sit here and act like he’s Puig, but he sure as hell makes you miss Puig a little less, no? Yasiel is a generational player, whether its his skill or persona that follows him throughout his career. Like I said earlier, they called him the Wild Horse for a reason. But you know what they call Aristides Aquino?
Shipping Puig off to Cleveland hurt like a sonofabitch. There’s no getting around that. But if you get dumped by a girl who you think is the greatest woman to walk the face of the earth, but you knew deep down inside that she was gonna leave you at the end of the season anyway and someone else shows up that is just as awesome and doesn’t have the option to leave you because of their contractual obligations, it’s hard not to forget about the old girlfriend a little quicker, right? I mean, I’ve been married for 8 years so I don’t know how girlfriend contracts go in today’s dating scene, but I’m gonna assume this analogy still holds up.
Aristides still has a few years of team control before he even touches the arbitration eligible years, so to say he’d be a steal at 1/20th of the cost it would take to re-sign Puig would be an understatement. That is of course, assuming he keeps up his production and continues to improve as pitchers adjust to his tenancies.
I’m not prepared to say 50 home runs is an expectation for him in the 2020 season, but I don’t think 48 or 49 is unreasonable. At this pace, he will be chasing down Barry Bonds right about the time David Bell is set to surpass Bobby Cox for the all-time ejection record. What a season 2023 is gonna be.Follow @BennyMacBlog