Ernie Clement – Highest Level: Triple-A
Of the players that are suited to take over for Francisco Lindor, Ernie Clement is probably the most MLB-ready of the bunch. He only has three games played at Triple-A Columbus, but his 113 games at Double-A Akron show that he can make the jump.
Had there been minor league baseball in 2020, Clement would have received more Triple-A experience, but since there wasn’t we have to take the small sample size, plus his Double-A play.
With Akron in 2019, Clement saw action in 98 games and was right around average at the plate with a slash line of .261/.314/.322. However, when called up to Columbus, his bat improved to .545/.615/.636 over his three games.
A fourth round pick out of Virginia by the Cleveland Indians in the 2017 draft, Clement is more known for his defense. His glove has been the best at second base, but he has many more games played at shortstop.
During the 2019 season, he was perfect in the field at shortstop for Columbus in two games of action. As for Akron, he ran out to short in 90 games and was able to sustain a .941 fielding percentage.
Clement might be the ideal player to play the bridge role until Freeman is ready. His bat and glove are both sustainable, but not long-term options at this point.