With Robinson Cano out, will Mariners move Dee Gordon back to 2B?
MINNEAPOLIS – As expected, the Mariners called up infielder Gordon Beckham from Tacoma to take the place of Robinson Cano, who was placed on the 10-day disabled list for a broken right fifth metacarpal.
Beckham has a ton of experience, having played middle infield in the big leagues for the better part of eight years. Out in center field, however, the Mariners have a player who has won a Gold Glove at second. Still, for now it appears Dee Gordon will remain in the outfield.
“We talked about it a little bit,” manager Scott Servais said Monday afternoon about the possibility of Gordon playing second while Cano is out. “The key is Dee Gordon, we committed to in center field. Understanding that he has had some highlight moments, some moments that haven’t gone that smoothly, but I think for him and the long-term future of this ball club, Dee Gordon is our center fielder.
“One of the things that played into that decision, I’m hopeful – we will know more about Cano’s timing. Is it four weeks (he will miss)? Six weeks? Is it eight weeks after he sees the specialist (Tuesday in Philadelphia)? If he is going to have a surgery, what surgery it is. But for right now, Dee Gordon is going to stay in center field, he will be our leadoff hitter and will continue to get better in center field.”
The term “for right now” is not exactly slamming the door on Gordon and second base. Waiting to make a final decision until there is more information about how long Cano is expected to miss makes sense. If Cano requires a longer recovery time, it very well could be determined that Gordon’s shorter-term value at second outweighs that of his development in the outfield. Moving Gordon to second would put Guillermo Heredia in center, which would give the Mariners plus defense at both positions.
It is certainly worth considering if Gordon is on board with such a move. The production they lose from Cano batting third is impossible to replace, but with Heredia in center on an everyday basis, there would be the potential to help out the pitching staff with better all-around defense.
First thing is first, however, and we should learn more about Cano’s situation in the coming days.