Saturday, July 23, 2011

Bloomquist provides spark to D-backs

By Anthony Fenech / | 07/23/11

PHOENIX -- Willie Bloomquist isn't Stephen Drew.

Bloomquist knows it, his manager knows it. But two games into his everyday role at shortstop, the veteran hasn't showed it.

Since the season-ending Drew injury, Bloomquist is 4-for-14, as the D-backs' resident pest at the top of the order.

"He plays with a lot of energy," manager Kirk Gibson said. "He's done pretty well for us. He started off the season very good at leadoff, gave us a lot of energy. And then he got hurt, went on the [disabled list] and kind of lost that.

"Now, he's kind of regained that again, and I think he understands what the loss of Stephen means. And that's the kind of guy you want to have that's going to fill in for Stephen."

Bloomquist led off Saturday's game with a single, and scored two batters later on a Justin Upton double, part of a five-run Arizona first inning off Rockies starter Jason Hammel.

He looks to get most of his playing time at shortstop in the leadoff spot.

"He understands it," Gibson said. "He's pesky on the bases, he's pretty good at disrupting over there when he's on first. He battles and understands the game situations. He walks and fouls a lot of pitches off."

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