The San Diego Padres have an abundance of young players. As they move towards 2017, they will need to figure out which ones can serve a purpose. One outfielder, Oswaldo Arcia, can do more for the team than many realize.
Youth is just something the San Diego Padres will need to deal with in the next few seasons. The roster won’t develop over night, so patience is necessary.
In the meantime though, the team must find ways to maximize the production of their young players. This includes a very young outfield, with loads of uncertainty.
One player currently on the roster which is often overlooked is Oswaldo Arcia. Though his contract expires at the end of the year, one would think it wouldn’t take much for general manager A.J. Preller to bring him back.
Sitting fourth in right field on the official depth chart, the 25-year-old has yet to show fans what he can truly accomplish. After bouncing around from Minnesota to Tampa Bay to Miami in 2016, Arcia landed with the Padres. He played in 14 games and hit a miserable .116.
His career batting average of .235 is nothing to write home about either, but it does partially come as a result of much inconsistency and bouncing around the league. It is very plausible that Arcia, if signed again, could find a home in San Diego and excel where expectations are low.
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Defensively, the knock on Arcia is that he isn’t very versatile. This is true, as the native of Venezuela has only played left and right field in his major league career. If he were to play a utility role, his inability to move around would make him a less desirable option.
However, Arcia is no liability defensively. In his four year major league career, he has only committed ten errors, warranting him a fielding percentage of .981. Arcia also has 16 outfield assists, as his arm is not the strongest, but very dependable.
Arcia currently sits behind Hunter Renfroe and Jon Jay at right field. But Jay plays all outfield positions, and Renfroe can’t play every day. This could open up a role for Arcia, if the team decides to keep him. Preller has discussed shaping the roster by picking players up from off waivers recently, but he must first examine whether or not that is an efficient way of running the team. It is possible that Arcia could play an important role in 2017, and for what he costs, it is worth finding out.