Friday, October 7, 2016

Ex-Twins watch: Chris Colabello

Last year at this time, Chris Colabello was an emphatic factor in the Toronto Blue Jays lineup. He had had a productive season at the plate -- .321/.367/.521 -- but was being largely limited to a platoon role because his skill set as a hitter largely duplicated those of Josh Donaldson, Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Russell Martin and Troy Tulowitzki, all of whom either had more defensive value or were better hitters or both, and at some point one has too many right-handed sluggers in the batting order.

But he mattered away in the 2015 postseason -- he hit a couple of homers, dominated the Texas pitching staff, and by the time the Royals knocked the Jays out had pretty much pushed aside Justin Smoak, the switch-hitting first baseman who was his platoon mate.

This year Colabello is not a postseason factor. He failed a PED test during spring training, and he had only 10 games in when the suspension hit -- 10 games in which he hit a dismal .069. After the suspension, Colabello was sent to the minors, and he hit .180/.248/.288 for Buffalo, which is more likely to get him released than recalled.

He never got back to Toronto, and wouldn't be eligible for the postseason anyway because of the PED suspension. He turns 33 later this month. Colabello has never been anybody's first choice for a major league job, and his future is not notably bright.

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