It was learned late yesterday that Yonder Alonso would indeed go on the disabled list with a sore shoulder. The San Diego Padres worked out Clint Barmes and Wil Myers at first base before the game on Friday. After the workout it was Myers who was penciled in to start the game at first base. Only his third time appearing at first base in the major leagues. The other two times were with the Tampa Bay Rays.
With Myers moving to first base, Will Venable was awarded a start in center and he responded. Venable went 3-4 with two RBI’s and was a double short of a cycle. Former Padre Oliver Perez came on to strike out Venable in the top of the ninth inning. The combination of Venable in center and Myers at first might be a common theme for the next two weeks. Bud Black has many options to choose from.
Abraham Almonte was called up to replace Alonso on the 25 man roster. He was hitting .308 with four home runs and 17 RBI’s in 26 games for the El Paso Chihuahuas. The 26-year-old outfielder is a switch hitter and plays decent defense in center. Almonte hit .265 with the Padres last season in 98 at bats. He also hit two home runs and drove in seven runs. However he struck out 20 times in the 98 at bats and that seems to be a common theme with him.
Wil Myers really impressed me with how natural he looked as first base. He seemed very comfortable and I got me thinking about him long-term at that position. It really makes a lot of sense, and the notion is starting to really grow on me. I like Yonder Alonso very much and when he is healthy, he should be in the line-up. I am speaking of Myers as a long-term solution at the position.
At the age of 24, Myers has a lot of baseball left to play. If he is capable of playing an adequate center field, then Yonder Alonso can get into the lineup and provide a much-needed left-handed bat in the line-up. The smoothness that Myers showed at first base could give the Padres many options when it comes to trades. You would have to think that another flurry of trades is coming.
Jedd Gyorko and Will Middlebrooks have been obsolete and neither has played much in the last week or so. Cory Spangenberg has come in and provided a spark plug to the top of the order. He at this point cannot be removed from the lineup. Spangenbergs speed and youth have been refreshing to see.
Yangervis Solarte has been clutch all season and has settled into the third base position in recent days. To me third base is his best defensive position. He scares me slightly at second base and I would rather not see him at first base either. Solarte’s switch hitting bat is responsible for 17 runs driven in so far this season. He is hitting .300 with two home runs and five doubles. He cannot obviously come out of the line-up. Bud Black has his work cut out for him trying to juggle all these players on a daily basis.