Something had to give last month on the 22nd, with the emergence of Rookie, Arismendy Alcantara, who has been playing well at 2nd base and in center field too, and at the time the team also had Emilio Bonifacio coming off the D.L. Bonifacio was traded last Thursday to Atlanta with pitcher James Russell for a minor league catcher. So, it was decided by Cubs management to designate popular 2nd baseman, Darwin Barney, who was well known more for his glove than his bat. It was not an easy move to make either.
“He’s a guy we have so much respect for as a person,” General Manager, Jed Hoyer said. “He’s a winning player, as he showed in college. I think he can do a lot of things on the field to help a winning team. He got in position here where playing time started to be scarce. I’m certainly hopeful that through this process we can get him to a place where he can hopefully help a contender and get a feel for a pennant race.”
Yes indeed did he win in college, while playing shortstop, helping to lead Oregon State University to back-to back NCAA Division I championships in 2006 and 2007 after helping lead his Southridge High School in Beaverton, Oregon to its first baseball state championship in 2002.
He was drafted by the Cubs in the 2007 Major League Draft and quickly moved up the ladder in the minor leagues, making it to Triple-A Iowa in 2009. However, with current Shortstop, Starlin Castro impressing Cubs brass when he was still in the minors, it was decided to move Barney over to 2nd base in 2010. He had a great teacher with then Iowa manager and Cubs Hall of Famer, Ryne Sandberg showing him the ropes. Barney was called up to the Cubs in late 2010 and won the starting 2nd base job the following spring. He ended up winning the Gold Glove award at 2nd in 2012.
Former Cubs teammate, Jeff Samardzija, now with Oakland recently said he’d love to have Barney on the A’s, but he got traded to the Dodgers instead for a minor league pitcher on July 28th and for now he’ll play at Triple-A for the Dodgers.