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Jemile Weeks is making a strong case for an Opening Day roster spot

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Switch-hitting infielder Jemile Weeks has been beyond impressive for the Padres this spring. Brought in on a minor league contract, Weeks has outplayed all other contenders for the utility infielder spot on San Diego's bench, including fellow minor league signings Adam Rosales and Nick Noonan, the now-retired Skip Schumaker, trade acquisition Jose Pirela, and Padres mainstay Alexi Amarista. A second baseman by trade, Weeks has also shown exceptional range and a strong arm at shortstop, a position he has appeared at in just three of his 243 major league games. While he has been versatile and sound defensively, that has been overshadowed by his torrid hitting.

Weeks has been an offensive juggernaut for the Friars this spring. While all spring sample sizes are small, especially at this juncture, Weeks has put up strong rate stats in a relatively sizable number of chances. He has appeared in a club-leading 17 games, and his 27 at-bats are eight fewer than leader Jon Jay's 35. Of players with more than two at-bats (sorry, Trae Santos), Weeks leads all Padres in each of the three components of the slash line with a .444/ .483/ .778 showing. Of course he leads the team with 12 hits, but he also ranks first in triples with two, and runs with eight, along with being tied for first in RBI and stolen bases; he and Christian Bethancourt have each driven in eight runs, while both Weeks and Travis Jankowski have stolen four bases without being caught once.

While Weeks certainly won't boast such astronomical averages by camp's end, and the ship has sailed on him becoming the star the Athletics thought he could be when they selected him with the twelfth overall pick of the 2008 draft, he could prove a useful piece for this year's fourth-place-destined team. As it stands now it seems that, barring injury, he'll eclipse the 28 major league games he's played in the past three seasons combined.