Alex Guerrero has been dubbed by some as, “the hottest hitter in baseball right now”, or the everyday third baseman for LA. This is all rubbish.
There is no way in the world that this 28 year old rookie out of Cuba should be starting over the likes of Juan Uribe, when he’s healthy, or even Justin Turner, a man who had every shit at the role coming into the back end of last year’s season.
Yes Guerrero has been good and he probably should be getting more time than he is under Don Mattingly but he should not be starting.
There wasn’t much doubt that Alex would make the team out of Spring Training, and the fact he hit over .300 with 3 home runs and 8 RBIs in 49 at bats didn’t hurt either.
The thing with LA for this year and what it has been last year is that the bench is very very deep. Joc Pederson, Justin Turner and even Andre Ethier highlight this along with Alex Guerrero, all of whom have very realistic chances at starting with most other teams in the MLB.
The problem for both Alex and Justin at LA is that the third base, shortstop and second base positions are all so good in terms of players who are there and the depth the club holds.
Even though Guerrero as of right now is hitting 11-22 with 5 homeruns and 22 RBIs, still doesn’t warrant him the every day role. Maybe Donnie could afford to rest Uribe some more and give Alex some more at bats or get him off the bench for the clutch pinch hit situations, which he has proven to do so well all year, but there it is very unlikely his numbers will remain as high as they are.
This is only his second season too and it wouldn’t be unfair to say that coming into the year Alex would only have been a .250 guy, if that and someone who would only hit 15 or so homeruns in everyone’s eyes. But now, just 19 games into the season, the Cuban is on track for 42 home runs, if he gets the playing time he is getting now, almost one at bat a game.
I would like to see him in the line up every third day for the next 2 weeks or so and reassess then or at very least rest Uribe more often than he is right now, giving Alex that chance for MLB experience and a good chance at helping the team win.
It isn’t like Uribe is terrible by any means, he is actually quite amazing. The only problem being that he is 36 now and with his numbers of games played going down due to injuries it would make sense for the two time World Series champion to sit it out more often, even with his lifetime .257 batting average and .271 for this year.
If anyone were to take Uribe’s spot if he was to go down all of a sudden with an injury like the recent season ending one to Brandon McCarthy then it would have to be Justin Turner. The man has experience, stature and can play, all essentials to playing in the bigs. Last year Turner even did the same thing that Guerrero did this year, went real big seemingly every at bat and clutched up for LA on many occasions. He never got the starters job but probably rightly so as Uribe was on fire for most of that time.
Both Alex and Justin could very well be in contention for when Uribe retires, be it this year or next but for right now JT would be starting for me on the daily with Alex getting his one at bat a game and starting every third game or so.