Many Cubs fans will be happy of the move to DFA Darwin Barney this afternoon. And even I can admit it’s no surprise. But still, a little piece of me is sorry to see it happen. If you follow me at all, you know I was an advocate of his. And I heard from fans on many occasion that it was silly to support him as I had. While his time as a Cub is coming to a close, I in no way think his career is. And there will be some interest, although it will be under the radar news.
As mentioned by Jon Heyman of CBS, there are some possible suitors for Barney.
if ever there is a good time to be DFA’ed, maybe this is it for darwin barney. oak, sfg, tor, cin, nyy all have 2B issue.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) July 22, 2014
I feel like the best landing spot for Barney will be an American League team. The designated hitter will allow whoever picks him up to “hide” him while he gets consistent at-bats in hopes of having a better second half. The one thing that he is sure to bring is a solid glove.
Barney won the 2012 Gold Glove at second base, and while they don’t reveal the order, likely was right behind last year’s winner, Cincinnati Reds Brandon Phillips in 2013 voting. He sits ninth all-time in fielding percentage (.9896) for career at second base, just AHEAD of Ryne Sandberg (.9894). He’s currently third among active players behind Dustin Pedroia (.9914), and Mark Ellis (.9909).
While defense is great, a career .244 average, and a .335 SLG isn’t going to get it done, especially in the National League. Barney lacks power, and has only average speed. He does have decent patience at the plate, but this season has seemed eager to “break” out of his slump by swinging early in the count.
So who would want Barney? It’s hard to say. He’s taken this season, the lack of playing time, like a true professional. And I don’t want to hear that they are “all” professionals. It’s simply not true. His continued his great defensive play when given the chance, but just hasn’t been able to shake his woes at the plate. That in itself could interest some teams looking for a middle-infielder.
I think for the most part, the Cubs out of a respect for Barney want to find a fair opportunity for him. A team with solid offense would benefit the most from Barney. And who knows, the change of scenery and a chance for everyday at-bats might be enough for him to break out.
I am sad to see Darwin Barney go, even though that’s not final yet. There is a very outside chance he could take a minor league assignment, but that’s highly unlikely. But I am excited to see the Cubs front office making the youth movement we have all been waiting for.
Good luck Darwin, and glad to see you stay Mendy.