San Diego Padres: Christian Villanueva to Play Multiple Positions

SAN DIEGO, CA - SEPTEMBER 21: Christian Villanueva
SAN DIEGO, CA - SEPTEMBER 21: Christian Villanueva /

In a move to maximize their offense, the San Diego Padres are looking to move Christian Villanueva around the diamond.

The San Diego Padres are once again going through a losing season and fan’s interest in the team has greatly diminished over the last few weeks. The Padres have vowed to use the rest of this season as an audition for many players at different positions. Just recently Wil Myers was moved to third base after a short time on the disabled list.

Andy Green and the Padres would like to do the same with their third baseman, Christian Villanueva. Villanueva has primarily been a third baseman for his entire professional career. He began his minor league career with the Texas Rangers at the hot corner and hasn’t looked back.

In fact, Villanueva has only played at a position other than third base 7.16% of the time in his entire professional career, with most of those being at first base. That will likely all change sometime in the very near future.

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In addition to the starting third baseman, the 27 year old has served as the Padres backup shortstop. Of course, a backup shortstop seems to be unnecessary for the Padres since they have Iron Man Freddy Galvis at short.

Villanueva has also been taking ground-balls at second base before games for most of the year. There were rumblings early on in the year that Villanueva would be getting a look at second base, but with Jose Pirela, Carlos Asuaje, and Cory Spangenberg all at the major league level, that idea never came to fruition.

On the same day that Wil Myers made his major league debut at third base, Villanueva made his major league debut at first base. Prior to August 13, Villanueva never played any other position other than third base at the major league level. He looked solid over at first base, although he often jumped to receive the throw from the infielders.

Villanueva moving all around the diamond would give the Padres a ton of versatility and many options to choose from. It also frees San Diego to send down or trade a second baseman and add another pitcher or maybe outfielder to the mix. Versatility is good for any team and this will only add to Villanueva’s value.

The Padres want Villanueva’s power bat in the lineup but with the future infielders that are making their way up it would be hard to get that bat in the lineup. Second base and shortstop looks to be locked down for at least the next six to seven years with Luis Urias and Fernando Tatis Jr respectively. First base looks to be also locked down with Eric Hosmer signing that big contract in the offseason and perhaps even third base is a lock with Myers playing there consistently.

With Villanueva being able to play multiple positions it allows Green to give those guys a day off and let good ‘ol number 22 play. This may be the Padres’ thinking and it seems to be a sound one.

Next. Should the Padres bring Galvis back in 2019?. dark

It will be quite interesting to see how Andy Green and the San Diego Padres use Christian Villanueva going forward.