ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

D-backs GM Towers expects Aaron Hill to make an impact

Aug 24, 2011, 4:13 PM | Updated: 5:27 pm

Two years ago, as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays, Aaron Hill hit .286 while collecting 36 home runs and 108 RBI.

In one and a half seasons since, the second baseman has combined for just 32 home runs and 113 RBI. His batting average dipped to .205 last year, and was sitting at .225 at the time of his trade to Arizona.

So, needless to say, D-backs GM Kevin Towers is hoping things improve for the 29-year-old in Arizona.

“He’s a guy that we think, with Don Baylor and getting to the National League, getting to Chase Field — a good offensive ballpark,” Towers told Sports 620 KTAR’s Doug and Wolf. “Getting to kind of clean the slate…still a very young player who is really kind of in the prime of his career right now.”

Towers said players will have down years, but there is a belief that Hill will turn his career around upon arrival in the desert.

And, at the very least, Towers thinks the team upgraded their defense at second base.

“It’s a guy that, over the last couple of years, probably has a little bit more range than Kelly [Johnson], probably a little bit better going back on fly balls,” he said.

Time will tell if Hill will be an upgrade over Johnson, but at the very least he should not be worse than the man he will replace.

Johnson was also struggling, and a fresh start may do him good as well.

So, while this isn’t a flashy move, Towers should certainly receive credit for trying something — anything, really — to keep his team at the top of the NL West standings.

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