Juan Uribe, Highly-Paid Spectator

August 11, 2012 at 8:58 am | Posted in Juan Uribe | Leave a comment

I know we’ve been talking about this basically every day, so this probably seems like overkill. Still, I can’t quite get past the ongoing absurdity of the Juan Uribe situation. He didn’t play last night against lefty Mark Buehrle, and he’s almost certainly not going to play tonight against righty Ricky Nolasco, especially not when Jerry Hairston has six extra-base hits in 16 plate appearances against the Miami pitcher.

When he doesn’t, that will put us one day shy of three full weeks from Uribe’s last start, and while I have no idea how to search for a healthy member of the active roster going that long without starts in a non-September situation, I don’t think any of us can remember a time in recent history where that’s happened. While obviously none of us are bemoaning the fact that Don Mattingly refuses to play Uribe – right on, Don – it’s a situation that is somehow both infuriating and entertaining all at the same time.

I bring this up today partially because it’s a light topic on a Saturday, but also because today marks two months since Uribe’s return from his latest disabled list stint, on June 11. Since then, he’s somehow been worse than ever, ‘hitting” .129/.195/.243 over 77 plate appearances. Of course, what’s most interesting there is the fact that 77 plate appearances over two months is just barely more than one a day, and obviously the bulk of those came before Hanley Ramirez arrived and Jerry Hairston was pushed back to the infield by Shane Victorino. With Adam Kennedy now healthy, it’s quite possible we never see Uribe again.

Yet he remains on the active roster, stuck in some sort of purgatory between “being too terrible to even have a case to play above Luis Cruz” and “under contract for another year and two months.” I can’t imagine he survives until 2013, but at this point, am I resigned to the fact that he’ll make it to September and probably through the end of the season, even if that means it’s entirely a life spent on the sidelines.

If so, his single in the tenth inning in St. Louis back on July 25 (shown below) might be the last time we see him on base. Even in success, it’s classic Uribe; he never would have had the chance had the game not gone into extra innings, he swung at the first pitch and at three of the four he saw, his back half totally flew off as he flung the bat at the ball, and he happened to get lucky with a dinker up the middle.

Six days later, he came in to go 0-2 as part of a double-switch against Arizona. We haven’t seen him since. We might never see him again, but he’ll be there, photobombing your pictures and haunting your dreams.

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