Is Giovanny Urshela the Cleveland Indians’ long-term solution at third?
Do the Indians finally have their long-term solution at third base in Giovanny Urshela?
The 23-year-old rookie has only played 27 games with the Tribe this year, but he seems to have the potential to take up permanent residence at the hot corner in Cleveland.
As noted in a story from Did The Tribe Win Last Night, the third base position has been a revolving door since 2002, when Travis Fryman manned the position:
"Even for a small market team like the Indians, the inability to find someone, anyone, to play a good third base for multiple season is an oddity. Yes, the Tribe is not often able to keep good players on high salaries. However, the team has been able to keep other positions fairly well settled over the years since the payroll began to fall out of the sport’s top tier in 2002."
While the Indians saw Lonnie Chisenhall as the future of the position when he was drafted in the first round of the 2008 MLB Draft. But Chisenhall hasn’t lived up to expectations, despite the numerous chances he’s been given.
Chisenhall’s failure to produce has opened up the door for Urshela, who made his MLB Debut on June 9. While he isn’t exactly lighting up the scoreboard (.247, 21 hits, two home runs, seven RBI in 85 at-bats), he’s an above average hitter with a solid glove.
From Did The Tribe Win Last Night:
"In a complete season at Columbus last year, he hit 13 homers and batted .276 in 104 games. In 21 contests before his promotion this year, Urshela was remaining consistent to a season ago. He was batting .275 with three home runs. In Cleveland, Urshela has remained a solid. With the Tribe, he has batted .256, with two bombs, seven driven in, over 26 games and 82 at bats."
With continued consistency at the plate, Urshela could have what it takes to be the third baseman of the future that the Indians have been searching for. While it’s still way too early to tell, the potential is definitely there.