It’s no secret to anyone that after this season the Dodgers will have a long-term void to fill at third base. Granted, they will still have Juan Uribe on the books through the 2015 season (to the tune of $6.5 million), but in all likelihood, the (then) 36-year-old will be utilized more as a utility bench player (and a good one) rather than the Dodgers everyday third baseman. And while Hanley Ramirez was initially projected by many to eventually move over to third base, his future status with the Dodgers remains uncertain and he will, in all probability, become a free agent at the conclusion of this season.
Down on the farm it was widely speculated that Dodgers 2012 first round draft pick Corey Seager would eventually be moved from his natural shortstop position over to third base. But the 20-year-old phenom is doing exceptionally well at shortstop and his anticipated move to third base has been delayed, and it now may not happen at all – especially with the Ramirez situation in flux.
There is one guy down on the farm who has been moved over to third base recently, at least for one game thus far – 27-year-old Cuban infielder Alex Guerrero. Guerrero, as you may recall, was signed by the Dodgers during the 2013-2014 off-season with every intention of converting the natural shortstop into an everyday second baseman. And though he saw considerable playing time at second base during spring training, the incredible rise of Dee Gordon now suggests that the Dodgers have their everyday second baseman for many years to come – and an All-Star second baseman at that.
On Wednesday, July 16, Guerrero, who is rehabbing with the Arizona Rookie League Dodgers after being viciously attacked by exiled former MLB catcher Miguel Olivo, played the entire game at third base and had one put out and one assist in two chances (for a 1.000 FPCT). And while no one is saying whether the move to third base is or was only a one-time thing, it makes perfect sense not only because Guerrero is very smooth with his hands and footwork, but because he was MLB-ready when Olivo bit a portion of his left ear off at Triple-A Albuquerque.
One has to believe that Guerrero’s time with the Arizona Dodgers will be short-lived – especially when you consider that he is nearly ten years older than most of his teammates there. In fact, a move back to Triple-A Albuquerque could come in the next few days. The question, of course, is whether or not Guerrero will continue to play third base when he returns to the Isotopes. If he does, the Dodgers long-term third base situation could very well be solved, depending, of course, on how well Guerrero plays the position at a much higher and more competitive level.