When a top prospect gets sent down to the Minors right before Spring Training ends, one of two things can occur. The first is he can be so upset at the “demotion” that he starts the season slowly. Or, he can be sent down and be motivated to show that the organization did him wrong. Fortunately for the Arizona Diamondbacks, Peter O’Brien has chosen the latter.
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The 25-year old O’Brien is hitting .383 for Triple A Reno with seven home runs. We know that the Pacific Coast League can inflate a hitter’s numbers but still, his start to the 2015 season is impressive. Last week, he had a stretch in eight games where he hit five home runs and drove in 13 runs. Last night’s 0 for 3 performance snapped a string of eight hits in his previous 16 at-bats. About the only negative on the hitting side is O’Brien has drawn only three walks in 81 at-bats. Defensively, it is interesting to note that he has not played an inning behind the plate. He has split time in the corner outfield spots with one game at first base.
If left or right field is indeed the future spot for O’Brien, then the D’backs will have to decide about making a deal or two. The outfield is jammed now and when Jake Lamb returns, he could force Yasmany Tomas back to a corner spot. Or, will the Snakes once again try him out at catcher where there is less of a roadblock? Some team, if not Arizona will find a place for Peter O’Brien’s bat in their everyday lineup.