Originally written on Fangraphs  |  Last updated 11/16/14

Lyle Overbay is available. The 35-year-old was designated for assignment July 31 by the Diamondbacks, a move that set him to clear waivers Friday and become a free agent should no team take him off Arizona’s hands.

It’s understandable why the Diamondbacks let Overbay go. He only mustered two hits in his final 25 at-bats for the team as Paul Goldschmidt established himself as the everyday first baseman. No platoon necessary there, and with 40-man roster spots required to make deadline math work out, Overbay was out.

But even with his brutal finish, Overbay hit .292/.367/.449 (112 wRC+) for the Diamondbacks and has a three-year line of .248/.330/.413 (100 wRC+). Average hitters are scarce in August. Can Overbay still impact a playoff race?

Perhaps not in a typical season — it isn’t often we see multiple contenders struggling to adequately man first base. But such has been the case in 2012. The Orioles and Rays, each within 1.5 games of a Wild Card slot, have identical wRC+ marks of 93 from the cold corner. The Pirates check in at 92, but will try Gaby Sanchez instead.

These laggards bring us to two NL West teams, the most fitting suitors for the former Diamondback: the Giants, sitting in 25th at an 88 wRC+, and the Dodgers, last in the majors with a decrepit 68 wRC+. Thank James Loney (.252/.302/.332, 325 PA) and Juan Rivera .250/.286/.357 (.252/.302/.332).

The Giants have at least considered the Overbay option, but the fit only works if Brandon Belt‘s reverse platoon splits are legitimate. He owns a .378 career wOBA against lefties with just a .297 mark against righties. But with just 382 plate appearances against righties and 125 against lefties, chances are things will at least even out.

Without those reverse splits, an Overbay-Belt platoon makes little sense (beyond any development concerns for the young Belt), as Overbay’s usefulness is limited to facing righties. He owns a .347 wOBA in the split since 2009 compared to a .285 mark against lefties. Still, the Giants could use him on the bench — San Francisco pinch hitters have managed just a .160/.234/.244 line this season. Overbay would be a marked improvement over Aubrey Huff (49 wRC+).

And so we have the Dodgers. New ownership at Chavez Ravine has made the big moves, bringing in expensive players in Hanley Ramirez, Shane Victorino and Joe Blanton. The club still faces a grind to the playoffs though, 1.5 games behind San Francisco in the NL West. First base is the major need, and Overbay’s preference to hit right-handers works fine for the Dodgers. Their static duo has been even worse against right-handers, with a .273 wOBA trailing the 29th-best Mariners by 12 points.

The Dodgers have toyed with post-July additions in the past — Greg Maddux and Jim Thome, just as examples. Rarely do we see a team so lacking in one spot get the chance to patch it after the deadline. Los Angeles just might have that chance with Overbay, a chance well worth dipping into the August transaction market again.


GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Head coaching candidates for the Denver Nuggets

Check out these leaked Clippers jersey redesigns

Aqib Talib’s aggravated assault investigation suspended by Dallas PD

Ohio State expects 80,000 at its spring game this Saturday

Bryant strikes out three times in debut; Cubs fans heckle him

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

NBA rookies who disappointed in 2014-15 season

Report: Urban Meyer reassured Belichick about Hernandez

Cuban: Harden is MVP, Rockets are not very good

J.R. Smith: 'I don’t think anyone can beat us'

SCOTUS asked to overturn baseball's antitrust exemption

Is Chip Kelly expecting too much from Josh Huff?

Ubaldo Jimenez hit Pablo Sandoval with pitch, was ejected

NBA to track and post referees’ calls beginning in playoffs

MLB payrolls continue to rise

NBA playoffs: Los Angeles Clippers vs. San Antonio Spurs

Home runs ruined our ability to appreciate production

Why we love the NFL draft

There are only two contenders ... in the West?

Woman stripped of marathon win, didn't actually run in race

Matt Barnes' son betrays him for Steph Curry

WATCH: Padres fan saved from falling by alert cameraman

Kemp hosts Seattle party over OKC missing playoffs

Jim Harbaugh showed up at Ultimate Frisbee practice

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Leaked Clippers jersey redesigns

Tequila Patron Sports Car Showcase preview

Home runs ruined our ability to appreciate production

Why we love the NFL draft

The "worst" player on each NBA playoff team

Jim Harbaugh showed up at Ultimate Frisbee practice

Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and the burden of legacy

Kris Bryant and floor versus ceiling

Top 10 storylines of the NBA Playoffs

A-Rod being taken to court over unpaid legal fees

Could Wilson really be a two-sport star?

Five players who must step up in the NBA playoffs

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.