The Oakland A’s still need help at second base. It may be worth taking a look at Yolmer Sanchez, who was released on Friday.
Second baseman Yolmer Sanchez was released at his request by the San Francisco Giants on Friday. For Sanchez, it was a numbers game. Both middle infielders Donovan Solano and Wilmer Flores are off to outstanding starts and their batting averages are among the top five in the National League. Flores also has seven home runs.
Sanchez, who spent his entire career with the Chicago White Sox before signing as a free agent with the Giants, won the 2019 Gold Glove at second base. The 28-year-old switch-hitter has a lifetime batting average of .244 with 31 HRs. Not impressive offensively, his defense is his forte.
Despite the Oakland A’s impressive start, second base remains a problem area despite grandiose plans in the offseason. They acquired Tony Kemp in the winter from the Cubs. While Kemp has hit just .239 without a homer this season, no A’s player looks better in the Kelly-green script- Oakland jerseys with the high green and gold striped stirrups. But looks aren’t everything.
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Franklin Barreto, annually talked about has an A’s infielder of the future, may have run his course. He does not have a hit this season, with four strikeouts in seven at-bats. On August 20, as a pinch hitter against the Arizona Diamondbacks, he looked totally frustrated, if not inept, as is swung and missed at three balls low and away and outside of the strike zone.
Rule 5 pickup Vimael Machin was supposed to shock the baseball world with his bat. He is hitting .125 with two singles.
Chad Pinder remains a valuable asset for the A’s. He can play a variety of positions including a very serviceable second base and has shown pop with his bat.
But by Pinder standards, he is off to a slow start hitting just .200 with two home runs. His bat may eventually be needed at DH if Khris Davis continues to look worthless, not like a $16.5 million a year player, at the plate. At some point, the A’s will have to cut their losses.
Save a miracle in-season acquisition of Whit Merrifield from the reeling Kansas City Royals, second base will remain Oakland’s Achilles heel in 2020. At least by adding Sanchez, the Oakland A’s know they will get a player that will only make an excellent infield defense even better. The hits will have to come from elsewhere.