Amed Rosario got his first start in CF for the Cleveland Indians.
Amed Rosario has two weeks to learn play center field for the Cleveland Indians? Simple, easy, no?
Poor Rosario made three errors in his center field debut last night. He missed two fly balls and then errored on a throw to second base. The blunders allowed a total of eight runs to score as the Tribe lost 17-8
Manager Terry Francona addressed the media after the game and said Rosario was carrying his glove too low, which caused him to lose sight of the baseball in the final feet of pursuit.
Talk about a tough day at the ballpark. That said, it had to be expected. Rosario had played one game in the outfield in his entire MLB life. He spent three innings in left field for the Mets back in 2019. The Indians knew this was coming , though. It’s why they parted with Billy Hamilton. Rosario needs game-action.
And while spring training games are three weeks old, his bat, at the very least offers positive vibes on player the Mets gave up on.
He’s also batting .389 (.839 OPS). Granted, Spring Training’s never made a Hall of Fame–the nice start at the very least, shows Rosario isn’t lost at the dish.
All Tribe fans should be pulling for Rosario, because while his stock is down, he’s still young enough (25) to harbor potential. Don’t forget, at one time, Rosario was one of the top ranked prospects in the game.
Having played shortstop, Rosario is a good enough athlete to make the switch. He just needs reps, and he’ll get them in Goodyear. Don’t forget, when Mercado was a shortstop in the St. Louis Cardinals organization and they moved him to center field. Alas, Mercado’s defense isn’t the problem.
Mercado is having a rough go of it–with a job on the line. He’s batting .238 (.606 OPS).
Meanwhile, Bradley Zimmer is making a case to be the Opening Day center fielder. With a .350 (.835) OPS, it’d be hard for Zimmer to do much more.
Zimmer has to play every day, so if it’s not in Columbus, it has to be in Cleveland. With things not going well for Mercado, perhaps the Tribe could try and ease Rosario into the outfield in spots.