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News » Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2008-09-05

Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2008-09-05

Arizona Diamondbacks Inside Pitch 2008-09-05
After the Diamondbacks acquired infielder David Eckstein on Sunday, manager Bob Melvin met with shortstop Stephen Drew about possibly moving down in the batting order.

Drew had hit leadoff since July 12, but Melvin also wanted to get the pesky, productive Eckstein at the top of the lineup.

"I told Stephen we could make some changes, but he said he was really comfortable there," Melvin said.

So Drew stayed at leadoff -- he was 5-for-5 and hit for the cycle the first game after his chat with Melvin -- and Eckstein moved into the No. 2 spot in the order, with Chris Young dropping into a spot more conducive to driving in runs. The D-backs have won two of three games since Eckstein arrived.

Drew has put together a career year in his second full season after arriving in the second half of 2006, when shortstop Craig Counsell suffered a cracked rib after being hit by a pitch from Jose Mesa.

Drew, hitting .288, leads NL shortstops with 37 doubles, and he has 11 triples and 16 home runs -- all career highs. He is hitting .315 in the leadoff spot, .333 since the All-Star break and .361 in the seventh inning or later of one-run or tie games.

"It's been a maturing process for him," third base and infield coach Chip Hale said. "He came with a high pedigree. Offensively, he's growing at the rate we felt he could. Defensively, he's as solid as anyone in the league. He's not flashy, but he's solid."

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: September 5, 2008

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