Jake Elmore, another second baseman who is trying to carve out a utility role in an attempt to earn a promotion to Houston, said the key to improving defensively at multiple positions is putting in the work.
“The only way to get comfortable at a position is to practice,” Elmore said. “The more you're out there early with people that have been out there the more comfortable you get ... What's good here is (Paredes) can pick people's brains.”
So far the right field/third base experiment has been a success.
“He has the ability to do that, play both infield and outfield,” said RedHawks infield coach Tom Lawless. “He could be a valuable asset to a big league team as a utility guy because he can do a lot of different things. He can run, bunt, drive the baseball and hit home runs. It's just a matter of getting a break.”
It won't be surprising to see the Astros to give tryouts to several RedHawks.
Houston already promoted Brandon Laird, a power-hitting, 25-year-old corner infielder who was stuck in the Yankees system the past three years. Batting third with the Astros, Laird has slammed two homers with five RBIs his first week.
When the Astros lost center fielder Justin Maxwell to a broken hand Tuesday night they promoted RedHawks center fielder, Robbie Grossman, who was projected to spend most of the season in Triple-A but gets an early audition while Maxwell is sidelined.
“Right now we're trying out a couple of different positions,” Stearn said. “The more positions he can play comfortably at the major league level the better chance he's going to have. He understands that. He's open and excited to try as many different avenues as possible to get to the big league level.”