The Arizona Diamondbacks best shortstop this spring has been a 20 year old Single-A minor leaguer who is still years away from the majors.
Chris Owings was recently ranked among the top 10 prospects in the D-Backs minor league system, however he’s still a ways from being able to help out the big club–and it’s looking like they might need help sooner than later.
The hopes were that Stephen Drew would be ready in time for spring training…then in time to start the season…now it’s apparent he’ll start the season on the DL and could be out for a much more significant period. The Diamondbacks only options at shortstop are Willie Bloomquist and John McDonald. Both are struggling terribly this spring with each hitting .200 with only 4 RBI between them in 60 combined at-bats. Both players are aging–Bloomquist is 34 and McDonald is 37–and if this spring is any indication both players may not be able to provide enough production for the position in an an event Drew’s return is continually pushed back. You’d expect Bloomquist to hit adequately–he’s a .264 career hitter–but he’s a below average fielder. It’s the reverse for McDonald how can’t hit a lick–a .238 career hitter with just 21 hrs career home runs in 2092 career at-bats–but is a slick fielder.
The fact that the D-Backs have made no moves for a veteran shortstop–as suggested here–might be a sign that they are more confident in a quick return for Drew. It could also mean that Kevin Towers and Kirk Gibson and company are more confident in Bloomquist and McDonald’s abilities that I am or simply that they’re willing to accept minimal production from the position until they have Drew back, or an alterNate Long term solution in place.
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