Escobar's deal won't impact Hechavarria

Escobar's deal won't impact Hechavarria

Escobar's deal won't impact Hechavarria
CINCINNATI -- Yunel Escobar's contract extension won't have an impact on top prospect Adeiny Hechavarria, according to Blue Jays manager Alex Anthopoulos.

Hechavarria was considered Toronto's shortstop of the future before Escobar was acquired from the Braves in July of 2010.

Escobar signed a two-year extension worth $10-million on Sunday afternoon, but the deal also has two club options that could keep him with the organization until 2015.

That could have put Hechavarria's future role with the club in jeopardy, but Anthopoulos said his team can never have too much depth.

"There's no effect, because Hechavarria is a highly-touted prospect and we believe in him," Anthopoulos said. "But there's no downside to having too many good players. I always say things will find a way to work themselves out, and especially when you have a middle of the diamond player.

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"A middle infielder like that, those guys can play anywhere on the infield. Obviously, Adeiny can play anywhere because of his skills and his defensive abilities."

Hechavarria is in the middle of his second season with Toronto's Minor League system. He is playing with Double-A New Hampshire, and has proven himself to be an elite defensive player -- but is still trying to work things out at the plate.

The 22-year-old is hitting just .233 with four home runs and 26 RBIs. He also has 17 doubles and 14 stolen bases on the season.

Hechavarria still has plenty of room for improvement, and Anthopoulos said it's too early to know when he would be ready for the Major Leagues.

"He's still developing, he's still a young player," Anthopoulos said. "Yunel has the potential to be here for four years beyond this year, so you're looking at a five-year period. With a guy like Adeiny, he's in New Hampshire, so I don't know what his timeline is going to be.

"But as we've seen with a lot of young players, they might get up to the big leagues and take another three, four, years beyond that to establish themselves."