On August 10, 2020 Luis Urias finally was able to make his Milwaukee Brewers debut.
Luis Urias would go on to collect one hit in four at-bats. His debut has been much anticipated by Brewers fans since he was acquired via trade in November of 2019. Many believe he was acquired to challenge Orlando Arcia for the everyday shortstop position, but like many Brewers, he possesses the ability to play multiple infield positions.
Urias’ road to making his Brewers debut was a rollercoaster. In January he would have surgery on his hand after he sustained a hamate fracture. Post surgery, his availability for the original Opening Day of March 26, 2020 was in question.
While Urias ultimately missed all of spring training, he was set to see his first game action on the day spring training was shut down due to COVID-19. At the time, that may have been a good thing for Urias who likely was going to need more time and at bats prior to joining the Brewers.
As summer camp was getting ready to start, Luis Urias would test positive for COVID-19. This set back forced him to miss significant time during summer camp and he started the 2020 season at the alternative training site.
Back In The Bigs
However, Urias is now with the Brewers and looking to contribute. Urias hit his way through the minor leagues often at or above a .300 batting average. He had a power surge in 2019 at Triple-A ball that included 19 home runs in just 295 at bats. His slash line in Triple-A during 2019 was .315/.398/.433/.998.
At the major league level, Urias has a relatively small sample size of 263 at bats in 83 games played. He has not found much success at the plate in those at bats for his career MLB batting average is .221.
Defensively Urias is solid. Throughout his minor league career he played primarily second base and shortstop, but also played third base. He fits the mold of a versatile infielder that Craig Counsell and David Sterns treasure so greatly.
So far in this 2020 season, Counsell has been platooning his infielders based on starting pitching. At shortstop, Sogard and Arcia have been platooning and Gyorko and Holt have been at third. Where does Urias fit into the mix?
Of the infielders mentioned above, Sogard has been the most effective offensively so far in 2020 and seems like a lock to start against right handed pitchers. Meanwhile, Brock Holt has not been able to get it going. Urias could be in line to play some third base if Holt continues to struggle, or he could play second base vs right handed hitters so that Keston Hiura can be the designated hitter.
Against left handed pitchers, Gyorko has been effective so far in 2020 and will likely continue to play in these matchups. Could Urias start at shortstop over Arcia for these pitching matchups? Maybe. Again he could also play second base with left handed pitchers on the mound so that Hiura can DH.
There are lots of options that could lead to Luis Urias seeing time on the ball diamond. If this were a normal 162 game season he may have received extended time at one position and constantly in the lineup, but with a shortened 60 game season he is likely going to have to hit his way into the starting lineup.