I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. I know I did.
Now, getting back to the Royals Blue Aid End of the Season Awards…
KC Royals shortstop Alcides Escobar definitely surprised me in 2012.
After playing in 158 games in 2011, he then racked up over 100 at-bats in winter ball. I thought for sure the rail-thin shortstop would break down during the regular season.
Instead, Escobar proved me wrong with his best season yet.
He played in three less games (155), but amassed more at-bats (605) and way better offensive numbers than in 2011. Escobar had the potential to be an All-Star in 2012, but when you play for the Royals, only one teammate goes to the game (and that was Billy Butler).
Escobar hit .293 with five homeruns and 52 RBIs (the homeruns and RBIs were a career high). He also had an on-base percentage of .331 and a slugging percentage of .390. He scored 68 runs and 30 of his 177 hits were doubles to go along with seven triples (and the five homeruns). He even stole 35 bases and was caught just five times.
His glaring negative is his plate discipline, or lack thereof. He walked just 27 times compared to 100 strikeouts.
In 2012, his defense at shortstop suffered a bit. He made more errors (19) than in 2011 (15) in less chances (just 669).
If Escobar can sure up his defense and continue to hit like he did in 2012, the Royals will have a perennial All-Star that managers and voters will not be able to overlook. The Royals also consider him to be one of two untouchable position players on the team this offseason (in regards to trades).