Milwaukee Brewers shortstop Orlando Arcia had a very productive sophomore season in 2017.
He certainly went through his ups and downs. But he showed the league what he can do, and that he can blossom into a very good shortstop in this league.
Offensively, Orlando had a lot to prove this year. Everyone knew he could play defense, and that’s why he got up to the big league level when he did. But he had to prove that he could be in the lineup everyday as well.
Orlando hit .277 on the year, which includes all but nine games played on the season. He had 140 total hits, 15 home runs, 53 RBI, and a .731 OPS. OPS is definitely one stat he needs to improve. But for a guy who hit in the eight hole for the majority of the season, those are very nice offensive numbers.
Arcia has the potential to be a top of the lineup guy in the future. He has speed and the ability to get a lot of hits. However. he just needs to improve his ability to get on base in other ways than getting hits. Also, like a few other Milwaukee Brewers, he needs to try to stay more consistent and not go into extended slumps.
Defensively, Arcia continued to make dazzling plays. He makes hard plays look very easy, but also botch some routine plays. For the most part, Arcia is very deserving of high defensive praise. All someone needs to do is look up a highlight tape of his defensive skills to be sold on his glove. However the sparkling plays don’t come without some mistakes.
Arcia finished the season with a .971 fielding percentage, making a total of 20 errors. Those numbers aren’t terrible. And you can certainly live with the occasional error with all the plays he makes. However, a lot of Arcia’s errors are due to a lack of focus, and can usually be easily prevented. Making a physical error or fumbling a bad hop are much more excusable than a loss of focus.
People do need to remember how young Arcia is when judging him now. At 23, there is still so much room for improvement, and this is just the beginning of what is to come. He has a good mix of young and veteran players around him to constantly learn and grow with. And he is also with a young coach who is a former player and infielder.
Orlando Arcia’s 2017 season was a very positive glimpse into the future of this promising shortstop. He will be a very important part of this Milwaukee Brewers team moving forward, and will look to continue to improve and become a more complete player in 2018.