2nd Base Options
Posted by The Right Reverend on April 1, 2006
No, I'm not completely soured on Junior Spivey. Yet. As it's been brought up elsewhere, there are better players who have had their struggles in Spring Training, and no one is worried about them. Though mixing Spivey's 19 K's in his 66 ab's with the fact that he's coming off wrist injury is pretty worrisome. Anyway, what's Jocketty to do about it?
For now it looks like the team is going to ride it out. I think it would be stupid to give up on the guy for having a bad spring, and he just needs to relax and let the game come to him. I don't believe he is the miserable hitter and bone-headed fielder he's been this spring. His track record just doesn't show it. But if Spivey falters, the in house options-Luna and Miles-could actually prove passable enough, hopefully. If not, who's available?
Well, believe it or not, the Reds are actually slating to start Tony Womack at second base and hitting lead off. Womack is having a sensational spring (.346/.393/.423) while Ryan Freel is hitting a lot like Spivey. (.156 AVG) The Reds also signed Rich Aurilia after Freel got into another DUI earlier. From what I hear, the Reds want to use Freel in the super utility role where his value is limited. Players with the talent of Freel should be playing everyday. My thinking…we already picked up one repeat Designated Drunk and gave him a shot at redemption, why not another?
In the last 2 seasons, Freel's OBP's have been .375 and .371 and he can steal 30-40 bases (though he gets caught too often.) Oh, and he can play outfield, another hole we have. And yet the Reds are inexplicably blocking the guy, and here's hoping they've soured on him.
Plan B-Why not Adam Kennedy? With no middle infielders making their way up the system, and a plethora of them coming up in Anaheim of Los Angeles of California of the Galaxy. (Wood, Kendrick, Aybar, etc) No, Kennedy shouldn't be the long term solution, but he's got a good glove, hits decently enough for a second basemen and isn't a bad basestealer. Both Kennedy and Freel just turned 30.
Lastly- maybe Cesar Izturis? He's 26, and coming off TJ surgery, and has nowhere to play in LA. He's a gold glover that could move Eckstein to 2nd base and at least for one season hit fairly well for a middle infielder. He might cost a lot in a trade, but could well be worth it, bringing back to St. Louis Gold Glove caliber defense in St. Louis for years to come.