NL West Off-Season Roundup: Second Baseman Ranking

The two top second-basemen in the division? - Thearon W. Henderson

Today in the NL West roundup, we will look at the very small amount of moves made by division teams, top prospects who could make the 2014 roster, and a very close battle for top 2nd baseman in the West.

Arizona Diamondbacks

Nothing at all coming from the Dbacks. However according to Nick Piecoro, the Dbacks could try to land Bronson Arroyo or AJ Burnett. Although it seems like none of these guys want to pitch in Arizona. Now let's take a look at some of the young, top prospects in our system who could make the 2014 team.

If you want a more in-depth look at the young guns reporting to spring training and what they might bring, go to Jim's and John's piece.

The key prospects battling it out will be Jake Barrett, Adam Russell, Matt Stites, and of course, Archie Bradley. As always, the Dbacks will have a lot of pitching depth going into spring. Russell and Stites could be the wild card this spring, as KT could use them for bullpen depth. But as we all know, the biggest piece battling it out will be Bradley, and yhe number #1 RHP prospect in baseball will look to get a spot in the starting rotation.

Colorado Rockies

Literally and figuratively a lot of minor moves for the rockies. The big one being Paul Janish. Janish isn't exactly a big name, but due to the injury prone of Troy Tulowitzki, it's almost a fact he'll get playing time in 2014. In 2403 career innings at shortstop he's posted a +10.1 UZR/150, and Defensive runs saved has pegged him at +23 in that time.

With back to back last place finishes, the Rockies could really use some bright young stars. Jonathan Gray and Eddie Butler will headline spring training, looking to help the terrible Rockies pitching. Some other young players with the invite to Spring are Tom Murphy, Rossell herrera, and others.

Las Angeles Dodgers

After weeks of anticipation for Tanaka's decision, and the Kershaw mega deal, it looks like the Dodgers needed a break.(OMG)

Despite totally not caring about their farm these last 2 years, they actually do have some nice young players, including Joc Pederson, Corey Seager, and others. Unfortunately, they won't be seeing much playing time unless they go to another team. The one need the Dodgers do have to fill is bullpen help. So pitchers like Chris Withrow, Ross Stripling, and Zach Bird could benefit this spring.

San Diego Padres

Moved: Signed Tony Sipp to minor league deal.

Ah much we miss you. :)

The Padres could very well have some of the best young prospects in baseball. And unlike the Dodgers, the Padres will not even be thinking about trading these young players, as they look to make the playoffs for the first time since 2006. This list is headlined by top prospect Austin Hedges, who is ranked #2 catching prospect in baseball. OF Hunter Renfroe and SP Matt Wisler will also battle for a spot in on the team.

San Francisco Giants

Once again no moves. But interesting to see fan favorite Pablo Sandoval is most likely leaving SF after 2014.

The Giants are a mixture of the Padres and Dodgers. They have a lot of players locked into contracts, but they still have some areas to improve. One area they always look to improve on is bullpen help. Pitchers like Heath Bell....errr, Heath Hembree, Martin Agosta, and the 4 relievers the Giants got last week will try to make the most of it in February. RHP Kyle Crick will also be looked at very closely this spring, as he is ranked #1 in the Giants system.

NL West 2nd Baseman Ranking

We now head into the 2nd week of NL West position rankings. Last week, Paul Goldschmidt won my vote, and the overall vote, with 63% voting for Goldie. (And 62 people hopefully got banned!) This week we'll take a closer look at all the 2nd baseman in the NL West. Who is the best? Read on!

5. Alexi Amarista

Hitting: First off I know Jedd Gyorko played a lot more games then Alexi did. But I think it's pretty clear the padres want Amarista to be their 2nd baseman, and find another position Gyorko can produce at. I guess the argument to put Gyroko here is Amarista's .232 career BA and .625 ops.........2/10.

Defense: Career .986 fielding%. For example, that's what Matt Davidson is expected to be at best. 4/10

Speed: Alexi doesn't have the stats to prove it, but the guy can run. If he can only get on more, I could easily picture him stealing 10-15 bases. 6/10

Health: About the only thing he's got going for him. Of course, he hasn't exactly played 400 games in a row, but whatevs. 8/10

Overall: Don't ask me why I'm being so harsh on this guy. If he can get on base more, steal, and become a better defender, he can become a nice 2nd baseman. I think I'm just being harsh because I have a feeling he'll hit .400 off us this year. 4/10

4. DJ LeMahieu

Hitting: In 2013 he hit .574 with eight home runs, 16 doubles, seven triples, 70 runs, 32 RBI and 39 stolen bases. Oops. That was his high school season. LeMahieu is a career .283 hitter, 4 homeruns, and has an OPS of .685. The average is nice, but those are shocking power numbers. He isn't CarGo, but you would expect more then 4 career HR's in Coors Field. 6/10

Defense: Pretty much the epitome of an average defender. .994 fielding percentage, with average range. 5/10

Speed: DJ can steal a base every once in a while, but not always smart about it. He has 19 career SB, with 9 caught stealing. About a 66% rate. 7/10

Health: DJ has yet to be injured in his MLB career. Maybe he should sell half of his body to Tulo. 9/10

Overall: He won't wow you with anything, but the fact is DJ can play some ball. He can become one of the better 2nd base hitters if he raises his power. He's not one of the big pieces the Rockies need to come through in 2014, but he could really be a key piece if he can improve on his weaknesses. 6/10

3. Alexander Guerrero

Hitting: His career stats are nice in Cuba. 102 career homeruns with a .302 average. When Cespedes came over, his average dropped like a rock, but everything else was pretty consistent. I don't think Guerrero's average will drop to .240, but I think his stats will suffer from some elite American pitchers. 7/10

Defense: He moves pretty well for a big guy, though might lose a step as he ages. He has a fast transfer and release, and overall a nice defender. 8/10

Speed: He's much like Goldie in being a big guy, but can run like a bull around the bases. He doesn't steal many bases, but he is smart about his base running. 7.5/10

Health: He hasn't had many problems with injuries, but I think more could start approaching him, with the fact he's playing more games in MLB. Plus, SS and 2B are known to be injury prone positions. 6.5/10

Overall: He looks to be a very nice player coming over to America. I think playing in the major-leagues will have an effect on his overall game, but he still looks like a pretty good ballplayer. 7/10

2. Marco Scutaro

Hitting: He's one of the best singles/doubles hitters in baseball. He won't give you any power, but that's a given in SF. Last year, in limited time, he hit .297 with 23 doubles. The one thing that Scutaro is best for is contact. He has less then 100 K's in the last two seasons, always crucial in a clutch situation. 7/10

Defense: Last year at 2nd base he had a crazy low fielding percentage of .976. But he does bring versatility, which is always a big thing. The Giants don't need Scutaro like the Dbacks need Prado, but he can still always play shortstop, outfield, 3rd, and 2nd. 5/10

Speed: He's getting up there in age, but he can still run. He's never been a real stolen base threat in his career despite his size, although his size does help him get around the tag and get to the base. 7/10

Health: Might have an issue or two, but overall always healthy. However, it could be interesting to see how healthy he remains due to his age. 7/10

Overall: Pretty much a consistent MLB player. But there's one more 2nd baseman in the West that's just a fraction better......7.5/10

1. Aaron Hill

(Let the "bias" comments begin)

Hitting: Hill has the same kind of stats as Scutaro, but the one thing that edges him out is his power and ops. Hill has 58 more homers then Scutaro in near 200 less games. It also helps that he's playing half his games in Chase Field. 8/10

Fielding: Although his range is limited, Hill is about as sure handed as possible. Aaron had a .995 fielding percentage last year, and seems to be getting better as he ages. 8/10

Speed: I don't know if there's such a thing as being average at running, but if there is, then Hill is one of them. 5/10

Health: A lot of people make a big deal of HIll's health issues. But Hill has played an average of about 112 games a season. Obviously not what you want, but Scutaro has averaged 115 games a season over 12 years. I know there's other factors in this like game started, etc, but you still have to admit Hill isn't as injury prone as you think. 6/10

Overall: Where Hill wins the battle at defense, Scutaro wins the battle at speed. They're both injury prone, Hill a little more. But the two things that make Aaron an inch better then Marco are his offense and age. Call me biased in 3....2.....1. 8/10

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