Anthony Rendon is admired by teammates, fans, and evaluators


Anthony Rendon is admired by teammates, fans, and evaluators. Rendon will turn 27 in June, and was a +4.4 bWAR in 2016 finishing up a very good comeback season after an injury plagued 2015 season and was named the Comeback Player of the Year by the MLBPA. In 2014, Anthony Rendon finished 5th in the MVP voting and won the Silver Slugger. Rendon is poised to get even better and reach the levels that were bestowed on him in the 2011 draft when he was considered the best offensive player in that draft.

Rendon was recently named the 9th best 3rd basemen in the MLB Network Top 10 as seen below:

Top 10 Third Basemen Right Now!
1.    Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays
2.    Kris Bryant, Chicago Cubs
3.    Manny Machado, Baltimore Orioles
4.    Nolan Arenado, Colorado Rockies
5.    Justin Turner, Los Angeles Dodgers
6.    Adrian Beltre, Texas Rangers
7.    Kyle Seager, Seattle Mariners
8.    Jung Ho Kang, Pittsburgh Pirates
9.    Anthony Rendon, Washington Nationals
10.  Evan Longoria, Tampa Bay Rays

Can Rendon make the adjustments necessary on what are seen as weak spots in his swing? We all have known that Rendon has been exploited on balls up in the zone. These issues have plagued Rendon where he has been beat on the top of the strike zone where he was 5-43 (.116 BA) during the 2016 season and 18-108 (.167) on the outside of the strike zone.

rendon zone chart

The scouts know Rendon’s weak spots and his strong spots, and the good news is that many pitches aren’t executed allowing Rendon to pound mistake pitches. Rendon can also help himself immensely by improving on balls high in the zone and outside.

Rendon compiled a career-best 85 RBI over 156 games played in 2016, and incredibly had 54 RBI in his final 69 games of the season. In total in 2016, Rendon had 153 hits, 91 runs scored, 38 doubles, 2 triples, 20 home runs and 12 stolen bases and a career-best 65 walks. Rendon’s slash included a .348 on-base percentage and  a .450 slugging percentage.  The player known as “Tony Two-Bags” of course led all NL third basemen in doubles and was a Gold Glove finalist leading the NL at the “hot corner” with a .976 fielding percentage.

Overall, it was all good for Anthony Rendon in 2016, and the question is whether he can get better in 2017?  FanGraphs believes Rendon will improve on his OPS and finish over .800, but will not be as good on defense. We will see what Rendon does when he plays the games.

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