Encarnacion in 2011
|Toronto Blue Jays – No. 10|
|Designated hitter / First baseman|
January 7, 1983 |
La Romana, Dominican Republic
|Bats: Right||Throws: Right|
|June 24, 2005 for the Cincinnati Reds|
(through May 23, 2013)
|Runs batted in||540|
|Representing Dominican Republic|
|World Baseball Classic|
|Gold||2013 San Francisco||Team|
Edwin Elpidio Encarnación (born January 7, 1983), is a Dominican Major League Baseball designated hitter/first baseman with the Toronto Blue Jays. The 6 ft 2 in, 235-pound Encarnación bats and throws right-handed.
Baseball career 
Cincinnati Reds 
Encarnación was drafted by the Texas Rangers in the ninth round of the 2000 amateur draft and signed with them. On June 15, 2001, he was traded along with Rubén Mateo to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for pitcher Rob Bell. He made his big league debut on June 24, 2005 and saw action in 69 games. He finished with a .232 batting average and nine home runs.
In 2007 Encarnación started the year slowly, struggling to bat over .200. He was frequently benched in favor of multi-position speedster Ryan Freel, which gave Josh Hamilton, who was attempting to resurrect his career after it was derailed by drug problems, more starts in center field. Encarnación was benched again at one point by then manager Jerry Narron for not running out a fly ball.
On Thursday, May 10, 2007 Encarnación was demoted to the Reds' Triple-A affiliate in Louisville, Kentucky, the Bats. He was recalled to the Major Leagues on May 22, 2007. He finished the season batting .289. The 2008 season saw Encarnación commit 23 errors in 143 games, although he hit a career-high 26 home runs.
For the 2009 season, Encarnación stated that he wanted to be more consistent as a hitter who did not try to hit home runs in every at bat.
"I want to try to stay more to the middle. Last year, I tried to pull too many balls and hit more homers. That's why my average went down. I will be more consistent as a hitter. I know I can do it. I've done it before. I know I can hit better than that and I just have to keep working".
Through May 1, Encarnación had the lowest batting average in the major leagues for the 2009 season, .127. From the end of April until the beginning of July, Encarnación was sidelined due to a broken wrist. However, he saw some immediate success upon his return; his batting average rose from .125 to .228 over the span of 12 days.
Toronto Blue Jays 
Encarnacion suffered first- and second-degree burns to the forehead and the right side of his face when a rocket firecracker hit him in the jaw and exploded near his mouth. After initially being treated near his Dominican Republic home, Encarnacion was transferred to a Miami hospital. He was discharged less than two days after the incident.
Encarnacion missed 30 games through April and May with a right arm injury, before returning on May 18, 2010. He hit a home run in his first at bat since the injury against the Minnesota Twins. On May 21, he had three home runs against the Arizona Diamondbacks, homering in three straight at-bats. On June 20, after a loss to the Giants, Encarnacion was optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas. However, in a surprise move, he was designated for assignment the next day by the Blue Jays. Encarnacion was eventually assigned to Triple-A Las Vegas on June 23, 2010, but was later called up to the Blue Jays again on July 3, 2010 after a struggling performance by Encarnacion's replacement, Jarrett Hoffpauir. He hit his 100th career home run against the Minnesota Twins on the last day of the season, and also became the Jays' 7th player of the 2010 season with 20 or more home runs.
Oakland Athletics 
Return to Toronto 
He would later rejoin the Blue Jays on December 16, 2010 to a new one-year deal worth $2.5 million plus a club option worth $3.5 million in 2012. He began 2011 season playing third base for the Blue Jays and struggled offensively. His numbers improved significantly after he was moved to the designated hitter position. In a game against the Boston Red Sox on September 7, 2011, Encarnacion set a new career record for doubles in a single season with 34. On September 22, Encarnacion hit a walk-off home run off the Rogers Sportsnet One sign in the 12th inning against Angels rookie Garrett Richards.
On October 31, 2011, the Jays picked up the $3.5 million club option for the 2012 season. In a game against the Seattle Mariners on April 28, 2012, Encarnación hit his fourth career grand slam in the 8th inning leading the Blue Jays to a 7-0 win.
On April 30, 2012, in a home game against the Texas Rangers, Encarnación hit the first home run off of starter Yu Darvish. In an interleague game against the Milwaukee Brewers on June 19, Encarnacion hit the last of three straight solo home runs by the Blue Jays, following Colby Rasmus and José Bautista, the first time in the 2012 season that the Jays went back-to-back-to-back with home runs, and only the sixth time in franchise history. On July 12, Encarnacion signed a 3-year, $27 million contract extension with Toronto. The deal includes a $10 million club option for the 2016 season.
On September 13, 2012, in a home game against the Seatle Mariners, Encarnación hit his 40th home run of the season (off starter Félix Hernández), and recorded his 100th RBI of the season, marking the first time in his career that he had surpassed 40 home runs and 100 RBI. Encarnacion was unanimously named by the Baseball Writers' Association of America (BBWAA) as the Blue Jays Player of the Year on November 28, 2012. He also received the Most Improved Player award for the Jays.
- Encarnacion to become utilityman for Blue Jays
- Encarnacion out to shake 'homer-itis'
- explodes near infielder's face
- Lee, Jane (December 2, 2010). "A's part ways with Buck, Cust, Encarnacion". MLB.com. Retrieved September 14, 2012.
- "Jays' options: Yes on Encarnacion, no on Rauch". MLB.com. October 31, 2011. Retrieved November 1, 2011.
- Lankhof, Bill (April 28, 2012). "Encarnacion's grand slam crushes M's". TorontoSun.com. Retrieved September 14, 2012.
- Millson, Larry (May 1, 2012). "Darvish strikes out nine to improve to 4-0". MLB.com. Retrieved September 14, 2012.
- "Rasmus, Bautista rally Blue Jays past Crew". MLB.com. 2012-06-20. Retrieved June 20, 2012.
- Barzilai, Peter (July 12, 2012). "Encarnacion sticking around Toronto with new contract". USA Today. Retrieved July 13, 2012.
- Toman, Chris (July 12, 2012). "Blue Jays sign Edwin Encarnacion to three-year contract extension". Retrieved July 13, 2012.
- Chisholm, Gregor (September 13, 2012). "Encarnacion belts No. 40 as Blue Jays pound King Felix". MLB.com. Retrieved September 14, 2012.
- Chisholm, Gregor (November 28, 2012). "Edwin Encarnacion named Blue Jays top player by BBWAA". MLB.com. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
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