2014 Arizona Diamondbacks Review: Infield


Sep 26, 2014; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks catcher Miguel Montero (26) singles against the St. Louis Cardinals in the first inning at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

If there is one thing that can sum up the 2014 Diamondbacks infield its that is was a complete mess. Injuries to the wrong guys at the wrong times allowed for the Diamondbacks to see what young players could do. By the time September rolled around, and the Diamondbacks were in last place in the N.L., the team wanted to see what some of their young players could do. As a result the Dbacks used 14 infielders during the regular season. We will not talk about all of them, but I wanted to point out that the Snakes used a lot of infielders. Here are the main players:

Miguel Montero: The catcher position was the only infield spot that actually stayed the same for the whole entire 2014 season. After a down 2013 season, Miguel Montero actually had a nice bounce back year in 2014 at the plate. In 136 games, he hit .243 with 13 HR, 72 RBI’s, and an OPS (on base + slugging) of .699. His 72 RBI’s were the most by any Dbacks hitter. Montero’s value extends behind the plate. He does a great job of controlling the pitching staff, and he is a workhorse. He caught 1152.0 innings this year which is the most in the majors. If there is anything he needs to work on for next year its controlling the run game. In 2014 he allowed 64 stolen bases and caught just 26 compared to 31 and 15 in 2013. His rSB or stolen base runs saved was -4 this season compared with 1 in 2013.

Paul Goldschmidt: If there is any injury that really bit the Diamondbacks, it was Goldschmidt’s injury. Granted when he got injured, the Snakes were out of the playoff hunt, but that was the final nail in the coffin. It is never fun to loose your best player. In 109 games this season he hit .300 with 19 HR, 69 RBI’s, and an OPS of .938. Goldschmidt was hit by a 99 mph fastball from Pirates reliver Ernesto Frieri on August 1st, which led to the Dbacks hitting Andrew McCutchen.

Aaron Hill: Despite trade rumors during July, Hill ended up staying with the Diamondbacks for the 2014 season. In 133 games, he hit .244 with 10 HR and 60 RBI’s. He actually had a better year at the plate than 2013, but that’s because he played more games. He is still regressing compared to his 2012 season. He is also getting up in age. Hill will be 33 come Opening Day 2015. It looks like the future for the Diamondbacks middle infield will be Gregorius at 2B, and Owings at SS. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Hill moved this off-season.

Chris Owings: Owings beat out Gregorius for the starting SS job out of spring training, and for the first month of the season, Owings was the best rookie in the N.L. In 86 plate appearances in March/April, he hit .316 with 7 RBI’s and 25 hits. He led all rookies in average and hits. Then in late June, just as he was peaking at the plate and in the field, he landed on the D.L. On June 29th, he went down with a left shoulder injury. That kept him on the D.L. till September, If he can stay healthy, I think he has a bright future, and will have a great 2015. He is the Dbacks future at SS.

Didi Gregorius: Gregorius had a down year in 2014. In just 80 games at the major league level, he hit .226 with 6 HR and 27 RBI’s. Owings played the majority of the time at SS, so it prompted then general manager Kevin Towers to send him to Triple A Reno. In 57 games with the Aces, he hit .310. When Owings got injured, Gregorius got a chance to play at 2B. Despite a down year, I think he has a bright future at 2B.

Martin Prado: In 106 games with the Diamondbacks, Prado hit .270 with with 5 HR and 42 RBI’s. He actually had a pretty nice year, which made him attractive on the trade market. The Dbacks traded Prado to the Yankees on July 31st.

Jake Lamb: After the Diamondbacks traded Prado to the Yankees, the Snakes called up third base prospect Jake Lamb on August 7th after just five games in Triple A. In 37 games with the Diamondbacks he hit .230 with 4 HR and 11 RBI’s. It looks like that Lamb and Brandon Druy is the Dbacks future at 3B.