Twins’ Rosario emerging into All-Star

If Mike Trout is the face of baseball, Eddie Rosario can’t be far behind.

That’s what the statistics indicate, anyway.

The Twins’ outfielder has been raking lately, sometimes singlehandedly winning games for Minnesota like Sunday afternoon when he slugged three homers, including a walk-off blast in the ninth inning of a 7-5 win over division rival Cleveland. Since May 1, Rosario is batting .364/.405/.678 with 11 homers, 12 doubles and 31 RBI.

But expand it even further, and Rosario has been one of the top-performing players over the past year. In his last 162 games played — or in other words, the equivalent to a full regular season — Rosario is hitting .304 with 36 dingers and 106 RBI.

He’s one of six active players with a .300+ average, 35+ homers and 100+ RBI in his last 162 contests.

AVG HR RBI
J.D. Martinez .309 57 139
Scooter Gennett .311 36 123
Nolan Arenado .326 37 132
Eddie Rosario .304 36 106
Jose Ramirez .317 41 100
Mike Trout .306 49 100

That’s not the only list Rosario shares with Trout, either. Both players are responsible for a large chunk of their team’s offensive output — 16.2 percent of their team’s total bases, to be exact, which is tied for second in MLB behind Baltimore’s Manny Machado (18.2 percent).

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Those type of numbers — surrounded by the league’s biggest names – should earn Rosario a trip to Washington for his first career All-Star Game in mid-July.

Among American League outfielders, Rosario ranks fifth in batting average (.312), RBI (43) and doubles (16), fourth in slugging percentage (.568) and second in hits (73).

It’s time to recognize Rosario for who he is. He’s not a just solid left-handed bat with a strong arm in left field.

Rosie is a game changer.

NOTABLE

— It’s not likely Joe Mauer, who is recovering from concussion symptoms, will play this weekend against Los Angeles. But he does own the second-highest all-time batting average against the Angels at .339. His manager Paul Molitor ranks fifth on that list with a .333 average.

— Launch angle: The Twins (39.2 percent) and Angels (40.8 percent) own the two lowest team groundball rates in the big leagues.

Eduardo Escobar has 36 extra-base hits in 56 games, the fourth-most among switch-hitters through 56 contests since 1920. Ahead of him on that list are Lance Berkman (39, 2008), Ripper Collins (38, 1934) and Mickey Mantle (37, 1956).

— Minnesota has launched 11 homers in June, tied with Boston for the AL lead.

— Twins pitcher Lance Lynn has recovered from his horrendous start to the season. He registered an 8.37 ERA over 23 2/3 innings in his first five starts. Since then, Lynn has gone 4-1 with a 3.34 ERA in six outings (32 1/3 innings).

Statistics courtesy STATS, baseball-reference.com