ESPN Insider: Martinez trade should not affect D-backs’ outfield defense
The Arizona Diamondbacks outfield committed 25 errors last season, the second most in the major leagues behind only the Minnesota Twins. Devastating injuries to center fielder A.J. Pollock and right fielder David Peralta forced infielders and a catcher to play the outfield.
Fast forward to 2017 and Peralta has stayed healthy – but Pollock went on the 10-day disabled list with a right groin strain in May and did not return until July 4. After Pollock went down, the playoff-hopeful Diamondbacks were in a position to add at the trade deadline, acquiring outfielder J.D. Martinez from the Detroit Tigers on July 18.
Since then, Martinez has manned right field and Peralta made the switch to left.
In an insider piece, ESPN expert Keith Law does not think the Diamondbacks will feel the effects of the swap.
With J.D. Martinez taking over in right field for the D-backs, although his defense isn’t great, with David Peralta taking over in left field, the effects should balance out.
Law also included a graph that pointed out the Diamondbacks inability to hold runners at first after getting on base. In 263 attempts against Diamondbacks outfielders, opposing base runners have taken at least one extra base 134 times (51 percent), the fourth-highest rate in the majors.
Even though Pollock and Peralta have stayed healthy for the majority of the 2017 season, Law ranked the Diamondbacks outfield 20th out of 30 teams. As a group, they have committed 10 errors, two below the league average, according to Baseball Reference.
In 47 chances with the Diamondbacks Martinez has yet to commit an error, compared with two errors in 102 chances with the Tigers.