The Ups and Downs of Mark Reynolds

Arizona Diamondbacks third baseman Mark Reynolds has had an interesting year to say the least. Coming off the 2008 season with the dubious honor of being the MLB record holder for strikeouts everyone was wondering what would happen in 2009.

Would Reynolds be able to become more patient at the plate and cut down on the strikeout total? Could he cut down on the fielding errors he committed in 2008? What exactly is Reynolds potential as a big league player?

Reynolds had what could best be described as a successful season. He became the first Diamondbacks player to hit over 40 home runs and steal more than 20 bases. After committing 36 errors in 2008, Reynolds was able to knock that total down to 24 this season.

Granted that is not Gold Glove caliber but it is a substantial improvement. Unfortunately the same improvement was not made in his strikeout total. Reynolds went from an unbelievable 204 strikeouts in 2008 to an inconceivable 223 this season.

Even with all of the negativity, Reynolds is becoming recognized as one of the emerging stars of baseball. As the season ended Reynolds began being mentioned in the same breath as the games great hitters.

With this recognition Reynolds has begun to win awards. The Sporting News announced that Reynolds made their end of year All-Star team. This is the first time Reynolds has been named to an all-star team in his brief three-year career.

The gang over at We Should Be GMs also noted Reynolds accomplishments as the leader of their “The Howard”. The Howard is given to a player who strikes out, commits an error, and hits a home run all in the same game. During the 2009 season Reynolds accomplished that feat four times. Reynolds finished the season tied with former Diamondbacks outfielder Adam Dunn.

The frustrating thing about Reynolds is that he provides you a glimpse of brilliance then the very next moment he dashes your hopes. A few years of watching Reynolds play will prematurely age the entire fan base.

I figure I am about two years away from being aged enough that I can apply to be one of the Golden Gloves at Chase Field. Hopefully this year Reynolds will find a new error-proof baseball glove in his Christmas stocking and maybe a pair of glasses to see the strike zone better.


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