San Francisco Giants third baseman Evan Longoria is headed to the injured list. Who will replace him at third base for the time being?
The San Francisco Giants will need a replacement for veteran Evan Longoria at the hot corner, at least for the next 10 days.
After an early exit from Sunday’s series finale against the Milwaukee Brewers with a sore left foot, Longoria was diagnosed with plantar fasciitis.
While an initial X-ray was negative, he underwent an MRI on Monday and was subsequently placed on the 10-day injured list.
That’s a big blow to the lineup, as Longoria has been the team’s hottest hitter of late.
He’s hitting .400/.471/1.067 with six home runs and 12 RBI in 34 plate appearances since the beginning of July, raising his season OPS nearly 100 points in the process.
While conventional wisdom would say this is a prime opportunity for Pablo Sandoval to see regular playing time, that might not be the route the team takes.
If manager Bruce Bochy prefers to keep Sandoval in his current pinch-hitting specialist, occasional starter role, the Giants could use this as an opportunity to give Triple-A slugger Zach Green a look.
The 25-year-old is hitting .316/.420/.278 with 22 home runs and 57 RBI in 245 plate appearances after signing a minor league deal with the Giants during the offseason. He’s been kicking around in the minors leagues since 2012 and is enjoying a breakout season after dealing with a series of injuries early in his career.
Even with inflated numbers at the Triple-A level this season, he’s earned his first crack at the big leagues, and this could be a perfect opportunity for the team to get a good look at him.
If Longoria is expected to be ready to go after the 10-day limit, the team may choose to go with someone else since Green is not currently on the 40-man roster and it would take a subsequent move to add him to the active roster.
However, if his status is in question beyond just 10 days, now could be the time to give Green a shot.
These are the kind of decisions a rebuilding San Francisco Giants team that is also trying to hang around on the fringe of wild-card contention is faced with, and it will be interesting to see how they handle the situation.