[tps_title]8. Yangervis Solarte Was a Pleasant Surprise[/tps_title]
In one of the many offseason trades made by the Padres, Will Middlebrooks was acquired by the team in order to replace the void left by Chase Headley, even with Yangervis Solarte on the roster. It was announced prior to spring training that both Middlebrooks and Solarte would be given the chance to earn the starting job based on their performance in Spring Training. Middlebrooks won the starting job despite a strong spring performance by Solarte, but Middlebrooks struggled out of the gate and eventually was demoted to Triple-A right before the trade deadline.
Once Middlebrooks was out of the picture, which he would be for the remainder of the season in Triple-A, Solarte was given the chance to start every day for the Padres in the second half. Solarte had one of the best second halves of any Padre with a slash line of .292/.336/.470 and a wRC+ of 124. Solarte proved to the Padres’ coaches and upper management that he can be an above-average starter at the Major League level. It remains to be seen whether Solarte will continue to start in 2016, but he deserves it.