Like I said: this will never get old.
Although there’s no video of it, rest assured that Kris Bryant went off again last night. Not only did he hit is 15th homer, but he also doubled, singled twice, and walked once. That’s a 4-4 night and five times on base out of five plate appearances.
When you come into a game with 216 plate appearances and a line of .335/.440/.637, it’s not exactly easy to raise your line significantly. And yet, Bryant managed the feat with his big night, leaping to .349/.452/.667. That’s a 42 point OPS jump … in one game … when he was already at 1.077.
And, not that there was a reason to be worried about it just yet, but Bryant has struck out just seven times in his last nine games. Oh, and he walked nine times in those nine games.
To put it mildly, Bryant is dominating AA. I’m not sure we’re there, but, at some point, you do have to wonder whether he’s simply not being challenged at the plate. (Defensively, that might be a separate question, though.)
At some point in the near future, Bryant, 22, will be promoted to AAA. That’s not inside information; it’s just the only reasonable conclusion when a guy is doing the things that Bryant is doing. At that point, be it a couple weeks from now, or a month, the Cubs will have to figure out what they’re going to do with Christian Villanueva, who is scuffling at AAA (but who is regarded by some as the best defensive third baseman in the minors). You’ve gotta figure the Cubs will want to give Bryant a chance to stick at third for a little while yet, so, when he comes up to Iowa, he’ll be starting at third.
Until that promotion comes, let’s admire Bryant’s Southern League accomplishments:
15 homers – leads the league by 5.
.349 BA - leads the league by 20 points.
.452 OBP – leads the league by 18 points.
.667 SLG – leads the league by 130(!) points.
1.119 OPS – leads the league by 177(!!!omg!!!lol!!!) points.
Yeah, but he doesn’t even have any triples.