In an interview with Burns and Gambo Arizona Sports 620 on Wednesday, ESPN baseball analyst Tim Kurkjian praised Arizona Diamondbacks infielders Martin Prado and Didi Gregorius for their roles on the team as they make their late season playoff push.
When asked about Prado, Kurkjian talked about the effect he has on the rest of the lineup when he gets going.
“I know Martin Prado, how much he meant to the Braves over the years,” Kurkjian said. “Chipper Jones told me many times, when he starts hitting the whole team does. It’s a gift he has, a real effect, and I think you see it with this team.”
Since the All-Star break, Prado is hitting .361 and has 16 walks to only 9 strikeouts. Prado came over in the trade that sent Justin Upton and Chris Johnson to the Atlanta Braves.
The topic was raised in response to Gambo’s column on ArizonaSports.com that gave D-backs general manager Kevin Towers positive grades on the deals that landed the players.
Regarding Gregorius, whom the D-backs acquired for pitcher Trevor Bauer, Kurkjain brought up his defensive value and pointed at how few hitters hit .300 in today’s MLB.
“The point is teams have gone back to pitching and defense and if you can’t catch it anymore, especially at the key skill positions, you are simply not going to win,” Kurkjian said. “And Didi Gregorius, he can catch the ball, he can throw it and he can get to it.”