Kevin Jairaj-US PRESSWIRE
Have you ever wondered who the heck Jason Donald is? NOW YOU WILL KNOW.
The big trade is final, and the Reds got what they so desperately needed - a replacement for Wilson Valdez. Jason Donald comes over as the afterthought in the big Shin-soo Choo deal, but it's not like he's unimportant or anything. Here's a look at what he brings to the table.
He came to the Indians in the original big Cliff Lee trade part I. He came up exclusively as a shortstop, but started shifting around the infield when he reached triple-A. He's shuttled back and forth between Cleveland and triple-A Columbus for the past three seasons, hitting well down on the farm but not much so in the bigs. He's played at triple-A in four seasons now, and he's hit really well. His career line at the level is a healthy .285/.372/.410 in 932 PAs.
That ain't the bigs though, son. He's been jerked up and down and has been used a bench guy in the big leagues, and he's hit a not-as-bad-as-I-thought-it-would-be .257/.309/.362. On a lesser team in a different time, he might even get a shot as a starting second baseman.
Of course, he won't do that for the Reds /crossesfingers. He's most likely gonna fill the Valdez role, playing back-up shortstop and second base as needed. He might even get a few starts at third base. His defense probably isn't as good as we'd like, as he rates as below-average at shortstop and a twinge below-average at second base. We've been spoiled by the likes of BP, Valdez, Cozart, Rolen, and so on, but he should be fine. He could be exposed if he has to play every day for a long span, but he probably won't.