Greg Bird has missed most of another season with injuries, but the Parrot is now spreading its wings in the Bronx.
Edwin Encarnacion broke out his “parrot” home run trot for the first time in two games in pinstripes, going deep in the eighth inning in the Yankees’ 6-3 win over Tampa Bay at the Stadium.
“I think he’s had two days of really good at-bats and hadn’t gotten any results to that point,” Aaron Boone said. “And obviously to see the Parrot come out, as not his opponent, was nice to see. It’s been good to see him just come in here and have the kind of at-bats we expect from him.”
Acquired from Seattle on Saturday, Encarnacion had been hitless in his first seven at-bats since the trade before clubbing Rays reliever Andrew Kittredge’s 2-and-2 pitch over the wall in right in the eighth for the Yankees’ final run.
Encarnacion, who leads the American League with 22 home runs, has been mimicking holding a parrot with his right arm extended while running out homers for several seasons. Many of his new teammates joined in from the dugout as the righthanded slugger circled the bases.
“I saw it after on the replays. It’s all about having fun, man. That’s what we do: we have fun,” Encarnacion said. “It’s a great group of guys. The guys, how they are here in the clubhouse and how they play the game it’s very [comfortable].”
Team security retrieved the home run ball from a fan for Encarnacion, who now has gone deep 402 times in his 15-year MLB career.
“Oh yeah. It feels great. It’s even better when you win,” the 36-year-old Encarnacion said. “I don’t feel any pressure. I just try to have fun. That’s what it’s about.”