3) LA Angels shortstop Andrew Velazquez must step up with the injuries
I know exactly who Andrew Velazquez is. He's a guy who will never hit well at this level but is an extraordinary defender. When I say he needs to step up, I don't expect him to hit much. All he has to do is not be pathetic at the plate.
Last season, Velazquez was forced into action because of the David Fletcher injury. He ended up playing in 125 games and slashed .196/.236/.304 with nine home runs and 28 RBI. He struck out 34.1% of the time as well which made matters more frustrating.
All I'm asking from Velazquez is to find a way to put the ball in play and get on base at around a 30% clip. He has the speed to make things happen as we saw last night. Velazquez doubled, walked, and stole a base. He did not strike out once.
Velazquez is the only real shortstop on the roster right now. Michael Stefanic has some experience playing short in the minors, but is a true second baseman. The only position he's played in the minors this season is second base. Luis Rengifo has played some shortstop in a pinch but is not good enough defensively to justify playing there. Brandon Drury is in the same boat.
Until David Fletcher returns from the Bereavement List (if the Angels decide to promote him) Velazquez is the guy who should be playing a majority of the shortstop. He's the only capable defender. Hopefully he can find a way to not be a massive negative offensively like he was for most of last season.