The Diamondbacks are on the verge of promoting Triple-A Reno slugger Kevin Cron, according to sources, a move that could help provide a lift to their struggling offense.
Cron is said to be meeting the club in San Francisco, where the Diamondbacks are opening a three-game series against the Giants on Friday. While one source cautioned that Cron’s addition to the roster is not yet a certainty, it seems more likely than not that he will make his major league debut this weekend at Oracle Park.
Cron, 26, a graduate of Mountain Pointe High in Phoenix, has put up eye-popping numbers so far in Reno. He leads all of professional baseball with 21 homers and is hitting .339 with a .437 on-base and .800 slugging. He has hit at least 22 homers in each of his previous four seasons in full-season minor league ball.
Cron was the Diamondbacks’ player of the month in April, in which he hit .352/.442/.807 with 11 homers in 106 plate appearances.
Where he will fit on the Diamondbacks roster remains to be seen. He has played primarily first base throughout his minor league career but also has seen time at third, where he is considered passable, at best.
Cron could steal at-bats from the club’s current first baseman, Christian Walker, who has struggled badly in recent weeks. In his past 15 games, Walker is hitting .148 with 22 strikeouts in 60 plate appearances.
The Diamondbacks offense has gone ice cold, scoring three runs or less in 11 of the past 16 games. During that stretch, they are hitting .216 as a team. They have scored two runs or less in four consecutive games.
The Diamondbacks have lost five to drop to 25-25 this season.
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