Versitile Morgan Bumped Up
The Glove Man Cometh
FutureBacks El Paso Editor
Posted Aug 17, 2004


If INF Matt Morgan were to be given a Native American name it might be 'Man With Many Gloves.' That versitility is exactly what the El Paso Diablos need, and was the primary reason for Morgan's promotion Monday from Lancaster. FutureBacks.com's El Paso Office Editor Chad Jones breaks down the move that sent Morgan up and moved Dan Uggla back to The Hanger at Lancaster.

Lancaster Jethawks (single-A) utility man Matt Morgan was brought up to the El Paso Diablos (AA) yesterday in exchange for third baseman Dan Uggla.

The move which some initially thought was made to help Lancaster prepare for the California League playoffs was in actuality done to give the shorthanded Diablos some extra depth, according to Bob Miller, the Diamondbacks’ Assistant General Manager in Charge of Minor League Operations,

"We needed to get more guys here because we almost lost our whole infield," said Miller. "Morgan can play anywhere on the field and can be used as a second catcher so even though we didn’t really get an extra body…we got an extra body."

Morgan, who has played every position except for right field during his 76 games with the Jethawks, batted 241 with 4 home runs and 25 RBIs. Diablos Manager Scott Coolbaugh said Morgan’s versatility will give the manager a chance to give some of his younger players, like hot-hitting Carlos Quentin and Conor Jackson, a much needed day off.

"It will especially help against the national league clubs," he added.

As for Lancaster, the return of Uggla will give the team another big bat in their already potent lineup.

"The biggest thing [Uggla] brings is pop in the lineup," said Jethawks general manager, Brad Seymour. "It gives us a little more power in the middle of the lineup and he’s proven himself at this level.

Uggla hit four home runs and drove in 30 RBIs for the Diablos who play their home games in the pitcher friendly Cohen Stadium.

And even though Uggla’s move may be seen as a demotion to some, Miller said the third baseman’s return to California had nothing to do with his performance.

"Dan did fine here," said Miller. "Morgan just gives us more flexibility."

Morgan went 0-4 with two strikeouts while playing third base during the Diablos 4-3 loss to the Arkansas Travelers (Anaheim), Monday, but Coolbaugh said you can’t judge his performance off of one game.

"He’s coming off of a rough trip and just came in this afternoon, so we need to wait a couple of weeks before we make any evaluations," said Coolbaugh.

Seymour expects his new slugger to join the team for their upcoming series against the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (Anaheim), starting today.

"We needed to get our lineups for the playoffs set by the middle of this week and we are excited to add him [Uggla] to an already strong team and hope he can provide us success into the playoffs," Seymour said.



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