Thirty-seven games into the 2007 season, Brewers slugger J.J. Hardy is hitting .327 with 12 home runs and 37 runs batted in.
In the last two seasons combined [159 games] Hardy blasted 14 homers and drove in 64 runs, while batting .245. The question remains: where did the 24-year old acquire this much power and why did no one expect this entering the season?
It's not often that a shortstop who is primarily known for his defense is leading the NL in home runs mid-way through the month of May. Many analysts expected the Brew Crew to have a solid season, but they did think their man power source would come from a player who has never hit more than nine home runs in a season.
Entering today, the Tuscon, Arizona native is first in the NL with 12 home runs and 37 rbi's, tied for first with Rockies outfielder Matt Holiday with 98 total bases, fourth in total hits with 51 and fourth in slugging percentage at .628. The only major leaguer who has been more effective with the bat up until this point in the season has been Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez.
To his credit, A-Rod is expected to put up insane statistics, Hardy is not. He is more of the conventional shortstop who is great with the glove and manages to hit around .250. For whatever reason, James Jerry Hardy has broken that trend and is quickly securing a reservation to San Francisco for July's all-star game.