The Brewers are calling up second baseman Keston Hiura from Triple-A San Antonio, as The Athletic’s Robert Murray first reported on Tuesday morning:
#Brewers calling up second baseman Keston Hiura, sources tell The Athletic.— Robert Murray (@ByRobertMurray) May 14, 2019
Hiura, a 22-year-old UC Irvine product, is rated as the Brewers’ No. 1 prospect and the No. 15 prospect in all of baseball by MLB Pipeline. Coming into the season, Baseball America ranked him as the 16th-best prospect in the sport and the top prospect in the Brewers’ system.
Hiura, the ninth-overall pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, was hitting .333/.408/.698 with 11 homers this season. However, in a development that may provide more concern than his slash line in an ultra-hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League, he has 40 strikeouts compared to 15 walks in 147 plate appearances.
The Brewers benched third baseman Travis Shaw, who has a .163/.266/.281 slash line this season, for their entire weekend series at the Cubs, moving Mike Moustakas — a third baseman by trade but a second baseman out of necessity this year — back to third and plugging in Hernan Perez at second. Shaw was back in the lineup last night at Philadelphia with Moustakas back at second, but per The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, Shaw is now likely to be placed on the injured list with a wrist issue, meaning that Hiura should get at least a 10-day trial in the Brewers’ lineup:
#Brewers’ Shaw indeed has a wrist issue, per sources. Move to injured list appears likely, clearing spot on 25-man roster for Hiura.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) May 14, 2019
That means Moustakas will likely move back to third for the immediate future with Hiura getting an opportunity at second. Even with Moustakas being a longtime corner infielder, it’s debatable how much of an upgrade Hiura will be from a defensive standpoint, as he was a DH for much of his college career, and his fielding ability has long been a cause for concern.