Durability a calling card for Donaldson

Photo Credit: John Lott/National Post

Photo Credit: John Lott/National Post

By: Danny Gallagher

Canadian Baseball Network

Durability. Dependability. Reliability. Trustworthiness. Tough mettle. Escapes injuries for the most part. Rarely takes a day off.

They are all the earmarks of an iron-man type player. That’s Josh Donaldson.

All season long, we have witnessed Donaldson’s offensive prowess, his excellent defence at third base, his heads-up mental play and his risk-taking adventures on the base paths, He does the little things that count, like scoring from third on Troy Tulowitzki’s short popup behind second plate.

But his ability to show up at the park every day and have his name pencilled in the lineup have teammates, manager John Gibbons, the coaching staff and opponents basking in acclaim.

With Oakland in 2013, Donaldson played in 158 out of 162 games and went to the plate 668 times. In 2014 with Oakland, he played in 158 out of 162 games and went to the plate 695 times.  And this season, he will be close to playing almost every game. You have to admire the guy. No calling in sick or asking to be left out of the starting lineup.

Following Friday’s game, Donaldson had played in 156 games, making him the ironman of the Jays by far. And for the first time in his career, he has passed the 700 plateau in plate appearances, the sure sign of an everyday player.

When the media voters think of the American League Most Valuable Player award, they will think of Donaldson mostly, with runner-up voters cast for Mike Trout of the Angels.

Donaldson has done more than excite the voters this season for a number of reasons, one of which is his ability to play almost every day.

Through a grind of six months, Donaldson has shown the mettle of a superstar. Hats off to him.

 

 

 

 

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Danny Gallagher

Danny was born in Ted Lindsay's hometown of Renfrew, Ont. but his roots are in nearby Douglas. He played 27 consecutive seasons of top-level amateur baseball in the senior ranks in Ontario, Saskatchewan and Quebec and thrived on organizing events himself, the major one being the highly successful 1983 Canadian senior men's tournament in Sudbury. He began covering the Montreal Expos in 1988 when he joined the Montreal Daily News. Later, he was the Expos beat writer for the Ottawa Sun and Associated Press. He has written four baseball books, including Remembering the Montreal Expos, which he co-authored with Bill Young of Hudson, Que. Gallagher and Young are currently working on a book about the ill-fated 1994 Expos squad. Gallagher can be reached here: dannogallagher@rogers.com