Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Once, and For All (Jenkins)

My response to a comment on brewerfan.net:

"and he[Jenkins] has been terrible when we needed him most the last two years."

Most of us were around here during the 2005 season and know exactly how it played out. It certainly doesn't fit your claim.

By July 1st of 2005, the Brewers were 37-42, 6.5 games back of the wildcard race and on the verge of another losing season and falling out of the playoff race completely. Carlos Lee had been great and Jenkins poor up to that point. Six weeks and a 19-14 run later, the Brewers were 56-56 and only 4.5 games back (August 8th). I'd be willing to bet you were one of the many Brewer fans that were excited by that fact, weren't you? What offensive player was the key during that run? You know the answer:
July, 2005
BA OBP SLG OPS

Lee .243 .313 .398 .711
Jenkins .379 .459 .653 1.112

While Lee had just begun his second half slide, Jenkins caught fire and helped propel the team into at least a modest hope of their first post season play in over 2 decades. It was still a long shot but it was the best position the Brewers had found themselves in so late in the season in years.

We know the rest of the story:

--------Lee-------- ------Jenkins-------
BA OBP SLG OPS BA OBP SLG OPS

August .264 .310 .434 .744 .310 .371 .575 .946
September .276 .319 .439 .758 .315 .388 .630 1.018

Despite Jenkins doing above and beyond what could have been expected of him, Lee and the rest of the team didn't deliver and the Brewers slowly drifted out of the playoff race. If that proves anything, it's that baseball is a team sport and one player can't do it all. It looks to me like the much heralded Carlos Lee wasn't there for his team when he was needed most.

You can pretend there weren't a dozen playoff threads around here in August of 2005 but there were. But that doesn't fit into the "Jenkins always pads his stats when it doesn't matter" bologna, so people pretend it never happened.

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