As we approach the final stretch of the regular season, players continue making their case to take home individual hardware following a succesful season. One of those players is Edouard Julien, who has been making a strong case to be firmly in consideration for the American League Rookie of the Year Award.
Entering Thursday night, Julien is slashing .288/.380/.475 with an OPS of .855, 12 doubles, 10 home runs, 22 RBI, 35 walks and 82 strikeouts in 76 games. Although the award is broken down by leagues, Julien's numbers this year rank near the top in categories with all qualified rookies.
Julien's .288 batting average ranks third among qualified rookies and second in the AL behind Masataka Yoshida of the Red Sox, while his on-base percentage of .380 is also second among rookies and second in the AL behind Ryan Noda of the Athletics.
In OPS, however, Julien finds himself sitting atop AL rookies with his .855 total. He is fourth in the league in that category, trailing Matt McLain of the Reds (.882), Nolan Jones of the Rockies (.861) and Corbin Carroll of the Diamondbacks (.856).
Making the case for Edouard Julien as Rookie of the Year
Looking further into Julien's numbers across more categories, he continues to standout. His wOBA of .370 and wRC+ of 139 is third among AL rookies in both categories. Julien trails Zack Gelof of the Athletics and Kerry Carpenter of the Tigers in both.
Showing an excellent ability to get on base, Julien's 12.6 BB% (89th percentile) ranks fourth among all qualified rookies and third in the AL behind Noda and Triston Casas of the Red Sox, and he pairs that with a barrel percentage of 13.3 which is in the 84th percentile.
Julien's plate discipline and ability to get on base have helped solidify himself as one of the top rookies in baseball this year. The numbers he has put up are impressive and he has achieved that in 236 at bats, which is 29th among all qualified rookies.
While he continues to build his case to win AL Rookie of the Year, Edouard Julien is standing out with less of a sample size than a lot of his competition.
Sure, that leaves more room for error, but if he is able to breakaway from a down month in August and get back to the player he was before, then he should be able to continue to see an upward projection in his numbers and his case for the award.
The competition is tough, with Julien up against guys like Josh Jung of the Rangers who was an All-Star starter. Jung, however, recently had surgery and is expected to miss quite a bit of time. Gunnar Henderson of the Orioles and Yoshida are two other names, among many, who are in the mix with Julien.
With the last full month of the regular season on the horizon, the race for AL Rookie of the Year will be a fun one. No matter who wins the award at the end of the season, it will feel like a few players got snubbed.