One of many highly-touted youngsters in the Padres’ organization, Urias was a consensus top-30 prospect in baseball when he made his big league debut last August. He appeared in just 12 games before a hamstring injury shut him down in September, however, and Urias hit another setback in his Major League career with an extremely slow start at the plate this season. Urias has just two hits in 24 at-bats this season, and has slashed only .083/.241/.125 through 29 plate appearances.
It isn’t a big sample size, to be fair, and that lack of playing time is likely a factor in Urias being optioned to Triple-A. Ian Kinsler has seen the bulk of action at second base this season, leaving Urias as something of a glorified utility infielder, backing up Kinsler, Manny Machado at third base, and Fernando Tatis Jr. at shortstop. Though Kinsler has also struggled in the early going, his track record gives him a leg up on the inexperienced Urias, who can now get some more minor league seasoning. Urias has already proven his worth against minor league pitching (.300/.405/.457 in 568 PA at Triple-A), so this demotion could be a temporary one, if Urias quickly gets his groove back at the plate.