Milwaukee Brewers: They need to option Orlando Arcia
By David Gasper
The Milwaukee Brewers have already optioned one productive member from the 2017 squad in Domingo Santana. Now it’s time to send Orlando Arcia to Triple-A as well.
The Milwaukee Brewers have already sent Orlando Arcia to Colorado Springs once this season. The idea was to get him the regular at-bats he needed along with the chance to work on some tweaks to his swing they were trying to work on. He stayed down there for three days. The Crew was forced to recall him when Tyler Saladino went on the DL.
Those three days in Triple-A weren’t enough to fix his swing, and now, it’s looking increasingly necessary to send Arcia back down for a second stint with the Sky Sox.
On the season, Arcia has a .199/.231/.257 slash line with an OPS+ of 31. He’s shown some signs of improvement with a few more hard hit balls recently, but they haven’t fallen for him. He’s still looking for his first extra-base hit since May 18.
Why Send Him Down?
Arcia has become the closest thing to an automatic out at the plate as you can get for a position player. He’s back below the Mendoza Line and he just looks lost at the plate sometimes.
He needs time to work on his swing and having the pressure of playing on a team that’s trying to contend will not help him. By putting him in Triple-A, the pressure is not on Arcia to get the results and get on base as much as it is on changing his swing and getting comfortable with the changes. He may not succeed right away after making the changes, but he won’t be disheartened by it in the minors.
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This way, the Milwaukee Brewers can fix Arcia’s swing for the long term and try to get some offensive production out of his spot in the lineup.
Also, Domingo Santana was a better performing hitter and he was sent down to the minors already. Santana was hitting .249 with a .667 OPS. Arcia is at .199 with a .488 OPS. Arcia has been worse at the plate, but there aren’t many better options to fill the hole in the middle infield
Who would take his place?
This is the big question that has basically kept Arcia in the majors. There’s no immediate better option. Arcia is one of the best defensive shortstops in the game. But his lack of production at the plate can no longer make up for that. Even if you lose something defensively, there has to be more offensive production.
Now that Brad Miller is up with the big league club, there’s another option for Counsell to use at shortstop. Hernan Perez has been playing well lately. Those two can play the bulk of the time at short while Arcia is in the minors.
Who to call up?
Perhaps someone the Milwaukee Brewers could call up in Arcia’s place is Nate Orf. Many fans have called for his promotion and Orf is proving why once again. He’s hitting .298 with an .838 OPS in Triple-A. Orf has a .403 OBP with 31 walks drawn this year. He only has four home runs, but Orf has never been a power guy.
Orf has 17 stolen bases on the year and would profile as a pretty good top of the order hitter. Obviously none of those spots are available in Milwaukee, but he should be able to hit in any spot.
While Orf primarily plays second base, he does have experience at shortstop and the outfield. He could find some time in the middle infield and provide some nice depth there. Orf, Perez, and Miller could all see some time at shortstop, along with Eric Sogard, but he isn’t hitting too well either.
The Brewers haven’t given Orf a chance yet, and maybe they know something we don’t about Orf’s chances to succeed at the big league level. But his offensive numbers look good, and he’s an average defender, nothing special, but he’ll get the job done. If they option Arcia, Orf should get a chance.
Next: The Mishandling of Domingo Santana
We all want Orlando Arcia to succeed and become that top tier shortstop we all know he can be. But his bat was always the question with him. If he can get some time to fix his swing, he should reach his potential in no time at all.