Los Angeles Angels third baseman Anthony Rendon missed over two weeks of play due to a groin strain suffered in one of the team’s first series of the year. Manager Joe Maddon was cautious in bringing him back, but decided the right time was on Monday against the Texas Rangers.
The Angels are 1-1 in his two games back, and he has certainly made an impact with his defense. However, he has struggled at the plate, going 0-for-8 with a walk in the two games. He only has 39 at bats this season, but is slashing a poor .231/.326/.308.
Maddon isn’t concerned about his star third baseman, saying he just needs more time to get back in a rhythm, and that he feels great both physically and mentally, according to Jack Harris of The L.A. Times:
“We just have to keep throwing him out there, giving him at-bats,” Maddon said of Rendon, who had previously been out since April 10 with a groin strain. “Watched him in pregame, he looked outstanding. Talking to him, he feels wonderful. It’s one of those things you have to work through.”
It’s certainly unfair to judge Rendon after playing just two games right off of missing two weeks of play. Maddon is right to have faith in a player who is just one season removed from being a top MVP candidate in the National League.
This is only Rendon’s first full length season with the Angels, and an early injury likely didn’t help make matters any better for him. But while he’s never been the type of player to have an OPS over 1.000, his current .634 number is something of a concern.
Over time, he needs to figure out his timing at the plate to get back into the rhythm that made him one of the league’s best players in 2019. Defensively, he still shows nightly the type of value he brings, but the offense does have some catching up to do.
Jose Quintana needs to trust himself after another tough outing
Jose Quintana is probably the Angels player who is having the most outward struggles. Of his four outings, three have been far from great, and he currently sits with an ERA over 10. He spoke about what’s going wrong, and he said he simply needs to have faith in his stuff and make adjustments based on that.