The Los Angeles Dodgers farm system is chalk-full of middle infielders that the organization is high on. Alex Guerrero, the Cuban second baseman signed to a four-year, $28 million contract headlines the group, with Erisbel Arruebarrena and Corey Seager also factoring into the discussion for future.
Guerrero may have been in the process of playing his way onto the big league roster, but is now sidelined for an indefinite period of time as he recovers from plastic surgery after a portion of his ear was bit off by former Albuquerque Isotopes teammate Miguel Olivo.
With Juan Uribe landing on the disabled list with a second hamstring strain, the Dodgers turned to Arruebarrena to fill the vacant spot on the active roster. At the time of being called up, manager Don Mattingly said Arruebarrena was with the team to give Hanley Ramirez an opportunity to rest, not fill in for Uribe at third base.
After missing four consecutive games with calf soreness, Ramirez returned to the lineup Tuesday and Mattingly changed his tune a bit regarding Arruebarrena’s usage, via Bill Shaikin of the LA Times:
Arruebarrena could be used at 2B, SS or 3B as needed, Mattingly says, but #Dodgers still consider him a SS.
— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) May 27, 2014
According to co-host of Dodger Talk on AM 570 David Vassegh, Arruebarrena fielded ground balls at second base prior to the Dodgers’ game on Tuesday:
Arruebarrena worked on turning DP's with Dee Gordon, now he's taking grounders at 2B
— David Vassegh (@THEREAL_DV) May 27, 2014
In 25 games with the Dodgers Double-A affiliate, Arruebarrena exclusively played at shortstop. Arruebarrena has made four starts with the Dodgers, with all of them also coming at short. The notion that the 24-year-old is capable of playing a multitude of positions comes as no surprise given his reputation of carrying an impressive glove.
Where Arruebarrena will need to improve is with the bat, though he was hitting better before being called up and is 4-for-10 with the Dodgers after going 0-for-3 in his debut.
Dodgers Update: Miguel Olivo Bites Alex Guerrero’s Ear, Needs Surgery