Blalock must go back to 3rd

By: Mark Van Paasschen
By: Mark Van Paasschen

It sounds wierd to say, but Hank Blalock needs to change positions again. 

In the midst of his current, lengthy, stint on the DL, Blalock made it known, that he was willing to switch from 3rd base to 1st base if that would help the team.  Sounded good at the time, but of course that was before Chris Davis showed up.

Blalock has had to sit and watch as Davis has, so far, exceeded expectations while manning the Rangers 1st baseman duties.  He's had an RBI hit in every game that he's started, and is now the only Ranger to EVER homer in his first 2 starts.

So now as Blalock is recovering from Carpel Tunnel Syndrome surgery he's facing the cold, hard fact that he's probably going to have to go back to 3rd if he wants to get back on the field.

Ron Washington cannot afford to take the credibility hit that would come if he tried to play Blalock over Davis at 1st.  For a guy who the team had decided to fire, but then changed their minds, he simply cannot risk benching one of his rising stars in favor of another who is quickly becoming a "has been."

Ramon Vasquez has held down the fort impressively at 3rd in Blalock's absence, but let's not get carried away.  Vasquez is just a guy.  He's a good player, but ultimately a spare part.  Blalock, although he's been injured alot lately has that All-Star ability still inside him.

But, as good as Vasquez is playing over there, it would not surprise me to see Blalock dangled out there as trade bait when the trade deadline rolls around.  He's still got that "Hammerin Hank" power in there somewhere that a contending team would be more than happy to take a flier on him for a AA pitcher.

As far as the short term goes, when Blalock does come back from injury, the Rangers infield should look like this: Davis, Kinsler, Blalock and Young.  Not to shabby, especially for Texas.

Mark Van Paasschen

KXII Sports

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