A dream season for the Diamondbacks’ Ketel Marte has come to a premature end. The club has shut down the second baseman/outfielder on account of a stress reaction in his back, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports. The injury doesn’t figure to affect Marte going forward, as general manager Mike Hazen said he won’t need surgery and should be ready for a full spring training.
At 78-75, the Diamondbacks have put up a valiant fight this year, but it’s clear a playoff berth won’t be in the cards. As such, it likely wasn’t an overly difficult decision for the team to shut down Marte, who has emerged as a franchise-caliber player this season.
Marte, who joined the D-backs in a whopper of a trade with the Mariners in 2016, turned into one of baseball’s elite all-around players in 2019. Not only did the switch-hitting 25-year-old slash an exemplary .329/.389/.592 with 32 home runs and 10 stolen bases in 628 plate appearances, but he was an asset on the defensive end. Marte combined for 5 Defensive Runs Saved and a 4.5 Ultimate Zone Rating among second, shortstop and center field (primarily the latter). His overall output was worth a jaw-dropping 7.1 fWAR/6.9 bWAR.
Back in 2018, Marte signed a team-friendly extension that could possibly run through 2024. The deal has gone about as well as possible for the club thus far, and it appears Marte’s on his way to being one of the faces of the Arizona organization for the foreseeable future.
Leads NL in hits and Total Bases I think.
Marte leads MLB in Total Bases and not just NL. Devers Bellinger Arenado all within 5.
Wow, it’s already been 3 years since that trade?
It is yet another example of why you shouldn’t give up on a young playér so soon. If I recall correctly a few of the Seattle fans thought he would never be a quality player.
You could say the same about the Diamondbacks with Haniger.
Most Seattle fans liked Marte. I personally followed him closely in the minors and believed he would be the second baseman of the future.
But Seattle had a glaring need for an outfielder at the time and Segura was a more established middle-infielder.
To be fair, Haniger was not quit on, he was seen as a guy with up-trending value (flyball approach with upper tier EV, that didn’t hit a ton of of IFFB) that was included to offset some of the value lost based on Segura’s lack of extended club control. Unless you believe that Zac Curtis was seen as a valuable piece. Ketel and Taijuan were both buy low pieces, but obviously had significant value as high-floor/high-ceiling guys.
In their defense, he never flashed anywhere near this kind of power in the minors. In well over 2,00 at bats in the minors he only hit 17 homers. With Seattle he only hit a couple homeruns. All of a sudden, with the Dbacks he hit near 50 homers in 2 seasons. An amazing quality about baseball. Hypes rookies can become scrubs and those though of as scrubs become stars.
To be fair, like someone else stated, it’s not that people wrongly believed he would never be a quality player. Rather, by the time he was traded to Arizona, he was regarded as a tweener. He wasn’t nearly good enough to play SS regularly and his bat had never shown short-, mid- or long-term potential to hold up at any other position (not even 2B or CF where he was profiling as decent-but-not-great).
It’s literally only been 2019 where *EITHER* of these elements have come together, let alone one or the other. His offensive breakout is simply because he’s one of the biggest recent beneficiaries to the MLB swing revolution and juiced ball. Like most other who could be associated to swing changes, it’s been a sudden explosion (Haniger’s shift from OF tweener to upper-tier COF was also the product of the swing-change revolution). He also seems to have blossomed into not only a good, but a great defensive CF.
While I am, of course, happy for him to have broken out as he has, it was still unreasonable to predict it was plausible in 2016. The ball was different back then (not yet juiced) and there just hadn’t been enough players who’d benefited from swing changes to be able to target highly likely future benefactors beyond “what he’s doing isn’t working, so let’s try this”.
I adored him at SS when he came up because he replaced Brad Miller.
Woohoo! The Cardinals beat the Cubs again this afternoon, and now they won’t have to face Marte next week.
Woohoo! Best Day EVER!! lol :-p
Nothing more exciting for a baseball fan than an mvp candidate getting knocked out for the rest of the season
I know right! -A’s fan
Yecch. The 3 best position players in the game this year (arguably) get hurt for the year in September. Trout, Yelich, Marte. At least these injuries didn’t happen any earlier!
I’d love to see him get some MVP votes. I think Bellinger/Yelich are a coin flip(I prefer Bellinger due to superior defense)
But Marte deserves to be considered along with Rendon with perhaps a few extra points for versatility tacked on(playing excellent 2B AND CF is pretty useful)
That was quite a risky contract Arizona gave him considering what he hadn’t done to that point. It could have turned into a “over paid utility man” albatross. To say it turned out well for Arizona is a huge understatement. They must have had a working crystal ball…..