TORONTO -- Edwin Encarnacion has become the latest member to join the 300-homer club.Encarnacion hit home run No. 300 for his career with a solo shot in the ninth inning of Toronto's 5-3 loss to the Astros on Friday at Rogers Centre. He is the 11th active Major Leaguer and
TORONTO -- Edwin Encarnacion has become the latest member to join the 300-homer club.
Encarnacion hit home run No. 300 for his career with a solo shot in the ninth inning of Toronto's 5-3 loss to the Astros on Friday at Rogers Centre. He is the 11th active Major Leaguer and the 11th Dominican-born player to reach that plateau.
The 33-year-old Encarnacion joined an impressive group of active big leaguers with 300 homers: Alex Rodriguez (who was set to retire after Friday night's game), David Ortiz, Albert Pujols, Miguel Cabrera, Adrián Beltré, Carlos Beltrán, Mark Teixeira, Ryan Howard, Adrián González and teammate José Bautista.
"I'm really proud to be on that list with all of those guys," Encarnacion said through an interpreter after the game. "I never thought I was going to get there, but I'm really glad and really happy."
Bautista reached the 300-homer plateau on Aug. 2 vs. the Astros, but on Friday night, it was Encarnacion's turn to take center stage. He got a 3-2 cutter from Astros reliever Will Harris, and like so many of the shots that came before, Encarnacion turned it into a no-doubter to left field.
According to Statcast™, Encarnacion's 32nd of the season was projected to travel 413 feet and left his bat at 109 mph. It appeared to land in a good spot, because the fan who caught it was more than happy to trade the ball for a signed bat. Encarnacion had the ball in his possession after the game and said he would be giving it to his father.
All but three of Encarnacion's 32 home runs this season have come since May 1, which is the most in baseball over that span. He also leads the Majors with 95 RBIs and is having another banner season with free agency heading his way at the end of the year.
"Good for Eddie," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "Like Bautista, they've both had tremendous careers here. He puts himself in a different category when you get that. But well deserved, and it couldn't happen to a better guy."
Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.