Called up on Jun. 4, prospect Eugenio Suarez is the latest player to occupy the Detroit Tigers shortstop position in 2014. Suarez got his first career start on Saturday against the Boston Red Sox and showed he could have what it takes to be the Tigers’ everyday shortstop.
In just his third career at-bat, Suarez homered to left field for his first career hit. Overall, Suarez went 1-for-3 with the home run, a walk and two runs scored and made some nice defensive plays in the game.
Suarez earned his promotion after putting up some solid numbers between Double and Triple A this season. In 54 games between the two levels, Suarez hit .288 with 18 doubles, 8 home runs, 36 RBI’s and a .360 on base percentage.
Shortstop has been a weak link for the Tigers ever since Jose Iglesias was shut down due to a shin injury. The Tigers had rotated three different players, Andrew Romine, Alex Gonzalez and Danny Worth, through the position so far this season and they combined to hit just .195 with a home run and 12 RBI’s.
The Tigers have been rumored to be in the market to add a shortstop, but that might change now. Suarez will likely be given every opportunity to prove that he can handle the everyday shortstop role before the Tigers make a decision on acquiring another shortstop.
Suarez solidifying the position would be huge for the Tigers moving forward. With Suarez filling the position, the Tigers could turn their focus to strengthening other positions, mainly the bullpen. The Tigers bullpen has statistically been one of the worst in the majors this year. They do have Joel Hanrahan, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery, on the way, but they could use some more help. Without the need to acquire a shortstop, the Tigers could target another bullpen arm.
If Suarez’s first start is any indication, the rookie could be the answer at shortstop and could provide the Tigers lineup with a spark at the bottom of the order.