Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Padres option Headley

The San Diego Padres made one of their more difficult decisions on Monday, optioning top prospect Chase Headley to their minor league camp.

What that means for the Padres is young outfielder Jody Gerut will possibly be the starter in left field when the 2008 season opens.  

The move was certainly no reflection on the way Headley performed in major league camp, but the Padres want to give him more time in the outfield in AAA Portland.  How long he will be with Portland before getting the call up to San Diego will be unknown, at least through the first month of the season.  Depending on injuries, he could get the call up as soon as May or as late as June or July.  The biggest factor will be the health of center fielder Jim Edmonds and right fielder Brian Giles.

Headley has to be disappointed with this move, especially because he performed at a higher level than a lot of us, Padres' brass included, thought he would.  He showed that he can make the adjustment from being a 3rd baseman to a left fielder and not be a complete defensive liability.

This can't get him down though, he needs to start the year in Portland and do everything that he's done in major league camp, show that he is ready and that he can play at a very high level.  Once he shows that, the Padres will have no choice but to bring him back up and let him be the left fielder of the future.

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