When star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. went down with a wrist injury and was given several weeks of rest and rehab, the San Diego Padres became extremely worried.
They needed someone to stand up and take over the team in Tatis’ absence: someone whose performance exceeded expectations and allowed them to keep up with the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants.
Some people believed that person wasn’t on the roster, but it is, and his name is Manny Machado.
Not only has Machado stepped up big-time with Tatis on the shelf, but he has taken things up a notch: he is, as of Monday afternoon, the National League’s most valuable and impactful player according to Wins Above Replacement, or WAR.
WAR is an assessment of a player’s contributions using his offensive, defensive, and baserunning performance.
“2022 NL Batting WAR Leaders: Manny Machado (2.6). Nolan Arenado (2.2). Tommy Edman (2.0). Jazz Chisholm Jr. (1.7),” Baseball Reference tweeted.
2022 NL Batting WAR Leaders
Manny Machado (2.6)
Nolan Arenado (2.2)
Tommy Edman (2.0)
Jazz Chisholm Jr. (1.7)
All Leaders: https://t.co/7ZNKOVKXXF
— Baseball Reference (@baseball_ref) May 9, 2022
A Fantastic All-Around Player
Not only is Machado an incredible offensive performer, but he is also widely recognized as one of the best defenders at third base in all MLB.
That surely helps his WAR output.
With the bat in his hands, he has been a difference-maker.
He is slashing .385/.460/.642 with seven home runs, seven doubles, 26 runs scored, and 21 RBI.
The Padres have gotten good offensive contributions all around, but none of them have had such a high impact on the team’s recent success as Machado.
When Tatis returns, pitchers will actually have to worry about two MVP-caliber hitters instead of one, plus a wide array of solid hitters.
For now, Machado is carrying the team, and he is doing a terrific job.