In case you were living under a rock last MLB postseason, Pablo Sandoval of the San Francisco Giants has the uncanny ability to carry a team to the promised land with just his lumber. Sandoval put on an absolute show versus the Detroit Tigers, and now he is punishing NL West pitching like it’s October all over again.
After a somewhat suspect start to the 2013 campaign, the Kung Fu Panda has been riding a hot streak, smashing multiple base hits in each of his last four games. In fact, the Giants’ slugger is 11 for his last 18 nailing in four runs and scoring four more in a four game time period. With production like this it’s no secret that the Giants stand at 15-12 on the young season and are just one game behind the NL West divisional lead.
Sandoval is now second amongst all third basemen with 21 runs batted in after only one month of play. However, a hot-start seems to be par for the course, considering Sandoval is a career .327 hitter in the months of April and May in his six year career–Sandoval finished the month of April with a .333 average on Tuesday.
It has been a struggle for Sandoval to stay healthy in each of the last two seasons as he has missed a total of 99 games. This is becoming an issue considering the weight that Sandoval plays at and the lack of offensive firepower that the Giants have. In order for Sandoval to finally have an MVP caliber season he must avoid the injury bug at all costs. I would not be surprised in the least if Sandoval is bestowed with the NL MVP honors this year, but it will take a lot more than a good April for him to explode.
If Sandoval is able to reel in the honors, he and Buster Posey will become the first National League tandem of teammates to win consecutive MVPs since Philadelphia Phillies Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard won the award in 2006 and 2007.