Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Ballad of Jedd Gyorko

Come and listen to my story 'bout a man named Jedd,
Poor Mountaineer, tryin' to keep his team ahead...

Jedd Gyorko hit a solo homerun in the 6th inning last night to give Adam Wainwright and the Cardinals a 1-0 lead in Milwaukee against the Brewers. The Cards would go on to win 2-1 in ten innings.

More often than not, my Fanduel spreadsheet has spit out Gyorko's name to plug in to my line-up (I had him in my line-ups for both the main and 8 pm slates last night).

Following are random facts about the life and career of Jedd Lindon Gyorko:

- He was born in Morgantown, West Virginia in 1988.

- At University High School in Morgantown, Jedd was All-State three times in baseball (hitting 40 homeruns with 231 RBI). Despite standing only 5'10", he was named first team All-State in basketball his senior year after averaging 18.2 PPG.

- At West Virginia University, Gyorko set or tied school records for batting average (.404), doubles (73), homeruns (35), and extra-base hits (113). He was a three-time All-Big East selection, making the first team twice, and won the 2010 Brooks Wallace Award as the best shortstop in NCAA Division I his junior year.

- Following his junior year, Gyorko entered the amateur draft. He was selected by the San Diego Padres in the 2nd round.

- Gyorko made the Padres' opening day roster in 2013. He played 125 games at second and third base his rookie year, batting .249 with 23 homeruns.

- On May 9th, 2014, he hit two homeruns, including a grand slam, and drove in six runs against Jose Fernandez as the Padres routed the Marlins, 10-1.

- He missed most of June and July in 2014 with plantar fasciitis, and finished the year with a disappointing .210 average and 10 homeruns in 111 games.

- Following the 2015 season, in which Gyorko batted .247 with 16 homeruns in 128 games, the Padres traded him with cash to the Cardinals for outfielder Jon Jay.

- Gyorko's homerun last night in Milwaukee gave him 24 on the year - a new career high. His 24 homeruns in just 305 at-bats - 12.7 homers per at-bat - would be the best ratio in the league if he had enough plate appearances to qualify.

- Despite having the 2nd-most homeruns on the team (one less than Brandon Moss), Gyorko has mostly been the Cardinals' fifth infielder this year - playing 40 games at second base, 33 games at third, 10 games at first and 10 games at shortstop.

- Of players appearing in at least 10 games at all four infield positions, Gyorko ranks second all-time in single-season homeruns to Mark Bellhorn, who hit 27 for the 2002 Cubs. (Rich Aurilia, who hit 23 for the 2006 Reds, is the only other such player to have hit more than 12.)


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