The Arizona Diamondbacks could be looking to bolster their middle infield, following a decent start to the offseason.
The Arizona Diamondbacks have made a couple big splashes in the free agent market.
The Diamondbacks also made a trade with the Atlanta Braves to acquire starting pitcher Shelby Miller to further bolster their starting rotation.
But, what should the next move for the Diamondbacks be?
It should be the signing of free agent second baseman Howie Kendrick. In fact, Fox Sports’ Jon Morosi has reported that the Diamondacks have been having “ongoing discussions” with the veteran infielder.
Signing Kendrick would be the right move for Arizona. Last year with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Kendrick hit for a .295 batting average with nine home runs and 54 RBI. While the power numbers don’t jump off the screen, Kendrick’s batting average does. Over 10 years, Kendrick has a career .293 batting average. That is something the D-Backs desperately need in their middle infield.
The Diamondbacks have had their struggles at second base and shortstop for the past few seasons. Last year, second baseman Chris Owings only managed to hit .243 and shortstop Nick Ahmed hit for an even worse .226 average. Kendrick would easily improve the struggling offense of the Diamondbacks’ middle infield.
The signing of Kendrick would have some conditions, however. If the Diamondbacks reach an agreement with the veteran, they will have to give up a draft pick to the Dodgers to complete the deal, since Los Angeles extended a qualifying offer to him. This is something that Arizona has already done this offseason when they signed Greinke and something general manager Dave Stewart is reluctant to do again.
Obviously, the Diamondbacks may buckle at giving up another draft pick, especially to their division rivals. But, the Diamondacks have already shown that they are in “win now” mode. Signing Kendrick would improve the club right now and giving up a draft pick who wouldn’t be major league ready for a few years, might seem insignificant at this time. Also, good major league players can be found all throughout the draft.
More from Heat Waved
- Arizona Coyotes: Slumping Strome Shipped to Chicago
- Arizona Cardinals Paid Sam Bradford $6.75 Million Per TD Pass
- Former Arizona Basketball Star Allonzo Trier Remarkably Efficient Lately
- Arizona Coyotes: How Coach Rick Tocchet Sparked His Offense
- Arizona State Basketball Has Two Transfers Ready to Compete
If the Diamondacks are truly committed to winning in the next few years, they can’t have as many question marks in their infield as they currently do. Ahmed will likely be the starting shortstop based on his defensive skills alone. But there are questions as to who will play second and third base.
Owings, Jake Lamb and Brandon Drury are all possibilities at those positions with Drury being able to play both second and third. Owings struggled last year after going through a bad shoulder injury the year before and after starting off strong, Lamb really struggled the rest of the season after getting over his own injury.
Kendrick would be a great fit for the D-Backs both at the plate and in the field. With last year’s leadoff hitter, Ender Inciarte, being sent to Atlanta in the Shelby Miller trade, it’s likely that A.J. Pollock will be hitting leadoff this upcoming season.
Kendrick could then either hit in the number two spot in the lineup or towards the middle of it. His high batting average makes it easy to put him almost anywhere in the batting order.
The Diamondbacks had one of the best offenses last season and adding a player like Kendrick would only improve it.