San Diego Padres: Where Will Luis Urias Rank After Rookie Year?

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CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 9: Luis Urias #9 of the San Diego Padres hits a two-run home run in the fourth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on September 9, 2018 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 9: Luis Urias #9 of the San Diego Padres hits a two-run home run in the fourth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on September 9, 2018 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /
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San Diego Padres
TORONTO, ON – OCTOBER 04: Former Major League Baseball player Roberto Alomar looks on prior to the American League Wild Card game between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Baltimore Orioles at Rogers Centre on October 4, 2016 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images) /

The top five seasons from rookie second basemen in San Diego Padres team history.

Twenty-six rookie second basemen have taken the field for the San Diego Padres and accumulated enough plate appearances to qualify for the statistical leaderboards, with an even smaller amount contributing above replacement-level.

A few notable names appear on this list, including Logan Forsythe, Bip Roberts, and Joey Cora, with our top-five list below headlined by a Major League Baseball Hall of Famer.

Honorable Mention- Cory Spangenberg (2015)

There were high hopes for Cory Spangenberg after the San Diego Padres drafted him 10th overall in the 2011 MLB draft. Since then, he has appeared in just 387 major league games, hitting for a .258 average and getting on base at a rate of under 32%. Now used mainly as a utility player for the Padres, Spangenberg’s best year in the majors, thus far, has been his rookie season in 2015.

Spangenberg played in 108 games during his rookie season, hitting four home runs, 17 doubles, a career-high five triples, and 21 RBIs. He also posted career-highs in batting average (.271), OBP (.333), walk rate (8.1%), wRC+ (107), and fWAR (2.0).

5) Josh Barfield (2006)

A former fourth-round pick of the Padres and number one overall ranked prospect in the system, Josh Barfield had a very brief career (309 career games) but made a big impact in his one and only season in San Diego.

Barfield played in 150 games, hitting .280 with a .318 OBP in 578 rookie plate appearances in 2006. He chipped in 13 home runs, 32 doubles, 58 RBIs, and 21 stolen bases, aiding the Friars in winning the National League West with an 88-74 record. Barfield was traded to the Cleveland Indians after the season, however, he would play in just 159 games over the next three seasons, at the major league level.

4) Jedd Gyorko (2013)

Still kicking it around with the St. Louis Cardinals, Jedd Gyorko finished his rookie season with a sixth-place finish in MLB Rookie of the Year voting after mashing 23 home runs and 26 doubles in 125 games. He finished with a .249/.301/.444/.745 slash and led the Padres lineup in home runs, runs driven in, and finished just behind Will Venable for the team lead in total bases. He was traded after the 2015 season to the Cardinals for outfielder Jon Jay.

3)Ramon Vazquez (2002)

Ramon Vazquez played his first 17 games as a major leaguer with the Seattle Mariners, but completed his first full season in the bigs with the Padres after being traded in December of 2001 to San Diego. His 128 games would be a career-high for the infielder, who put up one of the top three performances in San Diego history for a rookie second basemen.

Vazquez hit .274 with a .344 OBP and a .706 OPS. He hit two home runs, 21 doubles, and five triples while swiping seven bags and scoring 50 runs. In 572 innings at second base, Vazquez committed just five errors and had the fifth-highest Range Factor/9 innings in baseball (5.05). He would play another season and a half with the Padres before being traded to the Boston Red Sox.

2) Ryan Schimpf (2016)

Signed as a free agent before the 2016 season, infielder Ryan Schimpf may not have had an impressive batting average, but the 2016 rookie did put up one of the most productive seasons as a Padres rookie second baseman. Playing in just 89 games, Schimpf hit .217 with 20 home runs and 17 doubles, while working a .336 OBP. His nine home runs in the month of July are a Padres record and earned him Rookie of the Month honors.

Schimpf posted a wRC+ of 128 and slugged .533, both of which are franchise records for rookie second basemen. So is his 32% strikeout rate. He has since been traded to the Tampa Bay Rays, Atlanta Braves, and Los Angeles Angels, appearing in just five games since his time in San Diego.

1) Roberto Alomar (1988)

Sitting at the top of this list for most impressive performances by a rookie second baseman is Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar. The 17-year MLB veteran played his first three seasons in San Diego, making one All-Star game and finishing fifth in Rookie of the Year voting back in 1988.

More from Friars on Base

If you sort by fWAR, Roberto Alomar not only had the most successful rookie season for a Padres second baseman, but he had the highest production of any rookie hitter in Padres history.

Alomar played in 143 games and posted a slash line of .266/.328/.382/.709 with nine home runs, 41 RBIs, 24 doubles, six triples, and 24 stolen bases. He struck out in just 13.6% of his at-bats and drew a walk nearly 8% of the time.

Alomar excelled at the plate, on the basepaths, and in the field during his rookie season and throughout his Hall of Fame career. He would play two more seasons with the Padres before he was dealt along with outfielder Joe Carter to the Toronto Blue Jays for Tony Fernandez and Fredd McGriff. He received 90% of the Hall of Fame vote and was formally inducted in 2011.

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Let’s hope that unlike every player on this list (other than Spangenberg), Luis Urias remains with the San Diego Padres for a long, succesful major league career.

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