Jason Rogers: Milwaukee Brewers’ Spark Plug
Over the past week, the Milwaukee Brewers have been floundering, lifeless and in need of a spark. When they fall behind by any margin, a comeback seems impossible. Although their human spark plug, Carlos Gomez, is out for at least the next week, September call-up Jason Rogers is the answer to jump start the offense and regain the lead in the National League Central.
For the past two seasons, Rogers has done nothing but dominate minor league pitching. He was the Brewers’ Organizational Player of the Year in 2013, and played just as well this season.
Every step of the way, the former 32nd round draft choice has continued to prove people wrong. He was not ranked as even a top-20 prospect in the Brewers’ system by MLB.com, but he has continued to improve with each promotion. Last season, in AA Huntsville, he batted .270 with 22 home runs and 87 RBIs. This season while learning how to play third base, he has continued to excel at the plate. While playing in both AA and AAA Nashville, Rogers batted a combined .296 with 18 homers and 82 RBIs. He continued to showcase his strong offensive skills by ripping a double in his first at-bat of his major league career.
The first base platoon has worked up to this point in the season, but it has gone on long enough. Mark Reynolds has shown tremendous power, but his inability to consistently put the ball in play and hit for high average is killing the team. The Brewers were wise to not mortgage the farm and add Justin Morneau. With Rogers in the lineup, the Brewers can shift Reynolds to a feared home run threat off the bench and Lyle Overbay can continue to be their best bat as a pinch hitter.
Although he is vastly underrated, Rogers has delivered everywhere he has played and there is no reason to doubt that he can continue to hit at the highest level. In 2011, Paul Goldschmidt was promoted late and helped the Arizona Diamondbacks surge into the playoffs. This year, Rogers can have that same effect for Milwaukee. The season has rapidly been spiraling out of control and Rogers is just the bat that can right the ship and keep them in the race.