The SpongeBob run of Oscar Gonzalez was an incredibly fun time. From August 2nd until the end of the season, Gonzalez slashed .301/.333/.477 with 15 doubles, nine home runs, and 29 runs batted in. Unfortunately, that success did not carry over into 2023.
Gonzalez struggled out of the gate and ultimately found himself with the Columbus Clippers, Cleveland's Triple-A affiliate. The 25-year-old saw his slash line drop to .192/.213/.288 before being sent down. Things have improved upon returning to Cleveland, as he has eight hits in 28 at-bats, including two that went from extra-bases (one double and one triple).
When it comes to Gonzalez, has been a lack of discipline at the plate. The tendency to be a free-swinger can result in a string of electric moments, such as the end of last season, but it can lead to prolonged ineffectiveness in the batter's box. Gonzalez struck out 19.6% of the time as a rookie and has seen that increase by over one-and-a-half percent in 2023 (21.2% entering Friday).
If the Guardians do not believe he can become a more consistent presence in the lineup, they could look for options internally and externally to fill his spot in the lineup.