When the Brewers first acquired shortstop Willy Adames on May 22nd, 2021, now officially trademarked as “Willy Adames Day”, they knew they were getting a player who had mild success in the big leagues. The cost was parting ways with two fan favorite bullpen arms in Drew Rasmussen and J.P. Feyereisen.
Initially, the trade was made to shore up the infield defense given the struggles of Luis Urias playing shortstop every day. At the time, Adames was not having the greatest offense start to the season. But his intangibles of bringing tons of energy to the clubhouse and diamond were well-documented and was something the Brewers valued.
The Brewers have obviously responded well since that trade. Milwaukee is 24-10 with Adames as a part of their lineup, and at 45-33, they sit three games ahead of the Chicago Cubs for first in the NL Central division.
Since being acquired by the Brewers, Willy Adames has provided not just above average production, but clutch hits as well.
In 32 games as a Brewer, Adames is slashing .284/.341/.500 (.841 OPS). That is a big increase from his stats with the Rays where in 41 games he was slashing .197/.254/.371 (.625 OPS). He has hit five home runs with each team and all together has 35 runs batted in on the season.
With the Brewers, Adames has three games in which he has recorded four hits. Seven of his games have been multi-hit games and he seems to thrive when the game is close and in the later innings.
On his late game resume, Adames has two go ahead home runs in the 7th inning or later, one game tying home run in the 9th, and one game tying double in the 9th inning. It is fair to say he has been very clutch late in games.
According to Baseball Reference, when the game is late and close this season, Adames has 39 at bats. His batting average in those at bats is .385, OPS is 1.210, he has hit four doubles, four home runs, and driven in 10.
Adames has provided a big boost to this offense, which at times still struggles to deliver adequate run production. This makes Adames’s hits even more meaningful because the Brewers seem to rely highly upon timely hits to win games.
It is hard to pinpoint why exactly Adames is having great success late in games. It could be a combination of not playing at Tropicana Field, confidence level, or purely just a strange baseball anomaly.
Regardless, Adames is a very enjoyable player to watch and his ability to deliver for the Brewers consistently late in games in something of which to take note. If I were you, I’d make sure you don’t miss any of his late game at bats!