Cleveland Indians: Andres Gimenez finding swing in Columbus

Andres Gimenez #0 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Andres Gimenez #0 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
Cleveland Indians, Andres Gimenez
Shortstop Andres Gimenez #0 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Cleveland Indians shortstop Andres Gimenez finding swing in Columbus

The start of the season for Cleveland Indians shortstop Andres Gimenez was a bit rough. Coming to the Tribe as part of the Francisco Lindor trade, there was a lot of pressure on Gimenez to succeed and live up to expectations. The start was enough for Cleveland to send Gimenez down to Triple-A Columbus, but that stay could be coming to an end soon if he can keep up his strong play.

Andres Gimenez has only had six games with Columbus, but that’s been enough for him to begin to find his swing again. In 26 official at-bats, Gimenez has been able to log nine hits, good for a slash line of .346/.370/.462. He’s also been able to knock three doubles and register two RBI on top of a run scored.

A larger sample size might be needed before a move can be made to bring Gimenez back up, but the six games is still a great sign for the young 22-year old infielder. He’s also been able to work on his defense in Columbus, playing five games at short and one at second. Combined, he’s put together an error-free six games in the field on 16 chances.

Like any call-up, there has to be a reason or need for Gimenez in Cleveland. Owen Miller has essentially filled his role and while Miller’s sample size hasn’t been incredible, he’s done his job when needed. For as much as Gimenez has a small sample size in Columbus, Miller’s major league sample size is even smaller.

However, there might be a new route presenting itself for Gimenez to return to Cleveland. Unfortunately for the team, the Tribe have had a string of injuries that could open a door for Gimenez to get back to Cleveland if he continues to play well in Columbus.

Amed Rosario has missed a few games since being hit by a pitch against the Tigers. He was even a late scratch in the series finale against Detroit. If his injury lingers, then perhaps Gimenez could fill in for Rosario at shortstop. In addition to Rosario, Harold Ramirez and Jordan Luplow were both banged up against the Tigers.

While Ramirez and Luplow are outfielders, the addition of Gimenez could provide position flexibility with both Rosario, assuming he is healthy, and Miller. Both have the ability to play in both the outfield and the infield, creating a lot of versatility across the roster for the Tribe to ride the hot bat, or glove, in the lineup.

While Gimenez is really just a middle infielder, the others on the roster that play his position can play just about anywhere, opening up a world of possibilities despite him being a bit more limited in versatility.

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The other option that could get Gimenez back to Cleveland would be sending someone down. One name that is continually coming up to be sent down is Yu Chang. While Chang offers a lot of options in the field as a utility infielder, his stats are just not cutting it in Cleveland. This season, he’s slashing just .149/.183/.209 with four doubles and six RBI. That’s about on par with his career stats with Cleveland as well where he’s slashing .166/.244/.238 over 67 games.

Chang offers a backup first baseman on the roster as well as a third baseman, but the Tribe have been exploring new options at both. The last start at third that wasn’t Jose Ramirez was Miller who played well and can continue to fill that role. As for first, Josh Naylor has been seeing more time there of late, especially with more outfielders emerging.

The most recent non-pitcher call-up of Bradley Zimmer also shows that the Tribe want Naylor to play more at first. With Luplow, Ramirez and both Amed and Eddie Rosario being able to play in the outfield, calling up Zimmer just allows Naylor to play more at first.

With Naylor at first and Miller at third, Andres Gimenez would be able to fill the middle infield role that Chang would leave behind. If Gimenez can continue playing well in Columbus, then the front office will be pushed to make a move with him. If Chang continues to struggle then that seems like the logical move for the Cleveland Indians. The other would be if someone lands on the injured list.

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