Cabrera slid into the second base position in place of Danny Espinosa. While Espinosa is a sound fielder, the Nationals were looking for greater production at the plate. Cabrera is a career .270 hitter and the team needs him to produce with the absence of 3B Ryan Zimmerman.
The grade for his production since joining the Nationals — B.
Cabrera is only hitting .233 since joining the Nationals. His on-base-percentage is much better though at .314. In eight games with the team, the infielder is 7-for-30 with three RBIs and three runs. Cabrera’s fielding has been reliable, but the Nationals still need more from him at the plate. They traded for him with the intention that he would bring a spark to the lineup.
While his average is still climbing, Cabrera has only struck out five times with the Nationals. He is putting the ball into play, but hitting it right at fielders more often than not. His at bats have to be more strategic if he intends to get on base and bring runners home. The Nationals have been experimenting with where he will land in the batting order, but finding that sweet spot will depend on how Cabrera works his at bats.
If Cabrera hopes to hit behind strong batters like OF Denard Span, he must be able to create scoring opportunities at the plate. The potential is there for Cabrera to break out, and the Nationals will need that going into the final weeks of the season.
See Cabrera play by checking the Nationals schedule for the remainder of the 2014 season and grab some tickets to a game!