3B Jeimer Candelario
Sigh. This last one is just depressing. I’ve always liked Jeimer. Even when he got sent down in 2019, I hadn’t given up hope on him. And I was rewarded for that with strong 2020 and 2021 campaigns from the 28-year-old.
The 2020 season where he slashed .297/.369/.503 could have been a little deceiving because of the small sample size, but he backed it up in 2021 by slashing .271/.351/.443 with 16 homers and an American League leading 42 doubles. He also posted a 3.8 bWAR. There was even some thought of possibly extending him last offseason. Boy, did the Detroit Tigers dodge a bullet there.
Candelario, like many others on this team, has fallen off a cliff this season. His slash line of .204/.268/.350 is just sad. He has looked lost at the plate for most of the year, save for a small hot streak out of the gate after the All-Star break.
The one thing Candy has always been able to boast about is his eye. Even in his lackluster 2019 season he still had an 11.1% walk rate. But that is completely gone, as he’s only walking at a 6.3% clip this season. What on earth happened here?
That’s not to mention how bad he’s been with the glove this season. Candelario has never been a gold glover over at the hot corner, but he’s never been this bad either. He’s worth -3 outs above average according to Baseball Savant. He has seven errors this season, but he could easily have more if official scorers weren’t trying to pad stats.
I think it’s far more likely the Detroit Tigers wait to make a final decision on Jeimer until after the season, but he has shown little sign of improvement. With one year left until he’s a free agent, it’s best to just cut their losses. They need to create a 40-man spot for Ryan Kreidler anyway, so let him play third base the rest of the season.
Sigh. This just makes me sad.