Joc’s Work is Done Here

The photo is Justin Turner saying “It’s been nice knowing you, Joc.”

In case you have been living under a rock, Joc Pederson is very polarizing to fans. People love him or hate him. With his new swing, he has cut down his strikeouts as well as most of his his power. He will not hit HR with that swing. No way, Jose! He’s an OK outfielder, not a centerfielder and does not have good instincts on the basepaths. He has a great eye at the plate, but zero power with the overhauled swing. Muncy is better, Kike is better, Barnes is better. He is Chase Utley – and he’s a good guy but his time is up in LA.

Maybe he will do better somewhere else. I doubt the team can get much foir him… maybe a Top 25-30 Prospect. If Roberts is intent on playing Taylor at SS, I would call up Verdugo to play CF. He is really not a CF’er either due to his average speed, but he runs good routes. He will hit – of that I have no doubt. Just let him play everyday. He will adapt! I also think he will morph into a leadoff hitter. As much as I like Tim LoCastro, I see him as utility, not a starter.

If Doc plays Alex everyday, he will rise to the occasion.  As a rookie, I think he will put up a .350 OB%.  That’s what I predict. I have always said he might hit like Tony Gwynn – I stand by that! I also think he will hit 20+ HR… maybe not this year, but soon. He also is a very good baserunner – he has the instincts Joc lacks.  I am not a professional scout, but years ago, when Joc was in AAA, I said that thebest he would be was a 4th or 5th outfielder.  I think I was right – he looked like more for a while, but he’s not… at least not in LA.

I want to see this lineup:

  1. Verdugo  CF
  2. Turner  3B
  3. Kemp  LF
  4. Grandal  C (Catch him 5 times a week – he blows hot and cold)
  5. Bellinger  1B (let him alone – he will adapt)
  6. Taylor  SS
  7. Forsythe/Utley  2B (Chase is looking old)
  8. Puig  RF  (Just leave him alone – so what iof you get good production from the 8 hole?)

Dodger News

  • Ryu looks like he is well ahead of his projected recovery.  I think he will go on a rehab assignment in Mid-to-late-June based upon what I saw in LA.  He was jumping and moving very well.
  • I doubt that CK will go on a rehab assignment – I expect to see him start next Thursday against teh D-Bags… barring any physical setbacks.
  • The Dodgers are trying to “fix” Chargois’ control problems like they did Alexander when they sent him down.  He will be back in a couple of weeks I think.
  • The Dodgers aren’t trading for Manny Machado – Put down the crack pipe and walk away slowly!
  • Hey somebody… anybody: Put Brock Stewart in the pen and leave him there.  Just do it!
  • Dennis Santana had a rough start last night without his good stuff… but he adapted.  I went from depressed to impressed!

Photo Credit – NY Post

This article has 55 Comments

  1. I can agree with much of what you said about Joc, Mark. He is too cautious on the base paths and lacks the instincts and aggressiveness that both Barnes and Taylor have. I was hoping Joc would be more like Taylor and Barnes on the paths.
    .
    Joc is an above average left fielder and an adequate center fielder with above average ability to play shallow CF and turn his back to home and scamper back to catch a ball over his head. He lacks the typical speed of a center fielder as does Verdugo.
    .
    Few young players start out hitting with power and for average. Usually the path to success is to hit for average first and then the power will come if the player is strong enough. Joc is hitting the ball hard enough to clear fences now if his launch angle increases. Mark, you are saying that Joc’s more level swing means that he will only be a line drive hitter. Maybe, maybe not.
    .
    I was hoping the Dodgers would have a 30+ home run and stolen base type center fielder. That would give the Dodgers a center fielder that was more in the mold of a #3 hitter abeit much less than Mays, Mantle, Snider and less of a lead hitter. Bellinger would be the type of center fielder I would love to have but I also love to have speed at first base instead of a slow slugger like Gonzales, Howard, etc.
    .
    I like Joc but I can see his faults as easily as anybody else. I defend him against comments that are false though.

  2. I dont remember if it was the great Vin Scully who said that Pederson was the best CF he has ever seen?

    1. He said Joc was the best Dodger center fielder he has watched. Joc has since misplaced some of that defense that Vin saw.
      .
      Rudy in the last thread said he lost any like he had for Joc during the playoffs when Joc clowned around on first against Lester in the playoffs. I didn’t like that either but Kike’ was much worse. How many times could Joc been on first against Lester though as he rarely started against lefties much get on base when one pitched. I blame Doc for the shenanigans against Lester as clearly the plan was to bother him because he refuses to throw to first.
      .
      Idaho Al also in the last thread said he tired of Joc swinging for the fences for three years. Me too. But still can’t ignore his 26 and 25 home runs in his first two years and his high OPS in his second year. It is not so much stubbornness or attitude that keeps Joc from being as good as he could be. He would benefit from a higher IQ but maybe it is that IQ that allows him to play this game like a young boy who loved the home run, cheered his teammates, and brought coffee to his elders. I prefer Joc’s innocence over Verdugo’s white shoes, big red sliding glove, tats on tats, big gold necklace, etc.

      1. Bum

        I actually have no problem with what Joc is doing right now.

        My issue with Joc, is the fact he didn’t do this a long time ago, because he has never hit consistently.

        I feel like this effort is a little to late.

        He needed to work on his hitting like this, three years ago, or at least two years ago.

        Because he is blocking young players that are always working hard, to get better.

        And these young players already know how to hit to the opposite field, and with power

        I understand what you are saying about Verdugo, because your not the only one I have heard say that about Verdugo, but Verdugo did work hard in the off season to hit with more power, and he has so far.

        I think Joc’s defense is fine, in the corner outfield positions.

        I just think people expect much more from Joc, after four years.

        1. MJ, does it matter what anybody did in the past if that was their path to getting it right now? For instance, do you judge Toles for his lackluster pre age 26 years or do you recognize what he might be capable of now? Joc has contributed to 4 consecutive Division championships and was a key bat in their 43 – 7 run. He was bad before and after that run but it was that run that made the difference last year and he has key hits in the playoffs and World Series. His age 23 -25 career has not been as bad as you try to make it.
          .
          Joc is not blocking anybody. Verdugo is not ready, Toles is hurt again. Peters is still trying to make consistent contact, Diaz is not ready, Kemball is not ready. Who is Joc holding back?

          1. Bum

            I just have higher expectations then you do, when it comes to Joc.

            But I do think what he is doing now, is the right thing to do.

            Because I agree with you, that the power will come.

            But I just don’t think he has mastered hitting the ball the other way, in a month, and a half.

  3. Something to be said for Bums last comment. Attitude means alot when you put on the Dodger uniform. The gold necklace doesn’t look good and says alot about the guy. IMO

  4. Verdugo would’t be the first Dodger player to have tattoos or a big gold necklace, nor will he be the last. Those 2 things don’t have anything to do with any sort of attitude whatsoever. It’s how people express themselves. I don’t have any tats or a gold necklace, and that doesn’t mean my attitude is better than Verdugo’s.

  5. Maybe so, The big DODGERS across a players jersey is how a man expresses himself when he takes to the field. That and with his bat and glove. If he needs a six pound chain around his neck to express himself, well like I said, it doesn’t look good.

    1. Bobo,

      You are old school… like me. You need to get over it… like me.

      It’s the new world we live in… like or not. It’ aint’ going away anytime soon.

      No one in my family has tats or gold bling, but that could change…

      At least Alex doesn’t look like this:

      Image and video hosting by TinyPic
      Image and video hosting by TinyPic

  6. Mark, you are right. And hopefully neither of those guys play for the Dodgers anytime soon. But, like Tommy says,
    ” can they hit a curve ball? ”
    I wish Verdugo great success as a DODGER, and in life.

  7. Bum has previously indicated that Vin said that Joc was the best Dodger CF he had seen. I did not hear Vin say that, but as Vin was getting older more and more hyperbole was creeping through. Vin saw Duke, Willie Davis, Kenny Landreaux, and IMO Rick Monday was a better CF. When Joc first came up, he made some absolutely tremendous catches in CF which drew the comment. But as time has come and gone, Joc has morphed into a decent CF, but certainly not spectacular. He has been passed by CT3. Bum is right that Joc can still go back on a ball better than any Dodger OF which does allow him to play more shallow to hopefully eliminate more drop in singles. But Joc has regressed going left and right. Running into the linebacker in RF may have something to do with that, but it has certainly shaken his confidence where he is not calling off the other fielders soon enough.
    .
    I have never been anything other than ambivalent towards Joc. I have zero negative feelings with Joc, but he is not a favorite. The best thing that could happen to Joc is that he gets traded to a team with no expectations (i.e. Baltimore). I think he could assume Adam Jones’ spot in CF and go back to his power swing in that bandbox. I could see him hitting 40 HR in Camden Yards (318’ down RF). The O’s have zero LH hitting OF other than Colby Rasmus who is on the DL after getting 2 hits in his 21 AB. Zach Britton is scheduled for a rehab assignment next week (May 30)…maybe the Dodgers could package Joc to get Britton. Joc has 2 arbitration years remaining. Remarkably, so does Pedro Baez who also needs a new home with no pressure.
    .
    The Royals are also looking for a fire sale. Kelvin Herrera would look very good in Dodger Blue. The Royals also need a CF who can grow with the team. Both Britton and Herrera are rentals, but I do not think the lottery picks that would be included in the package would be too daunting, and I do believe that both Joc and Petey will do well away from Dodger Stadium and Dodger fans. Joc could keep his current swing in KC. He is a better alternative to Abraham Almonte or Jon Jay (although I have always liked Jon Jay as a #4).
    .
    The Dodgers are not going to get Machado (this year or next year). I think the Dodgers will do everything they can do extend Kershaw, but do so with a lower AAV for luxury tax purposes. But I can see them going for Harper next year and Arenado the year after. It is not that I do not like Machado, but he plays SS and 3B (and will only play SS next year), reserved for Seager and JT. JT cannot play 2B anymore, and is a near GG at 3B. Seager is not going to go to 2B, or 1B, or LF. I have no idea how he will come back after TJ surgery. The only other regular infielder I can remember coming back after TJ was Zach Cozart, and his TJ was on his non-throwing arm. Maybe somebody else can come up with others.
    .
    I agree that Tim Locastro is a utility player, but wasn’t CT3 last year? I would have no objection to Alex Verdugo coming up and playing CF, but only on a full-time basis, and only if he is ready. I do not want to see him going up and down. I think his ego gets bruised a little too easily, but at 22, he can only get better. So when he does come back, put him out there and leave him.

    1. It would only cost the Dodgers about $300,000 to put him on the team. He could be a part-time first baseman when Bellinger plays CF.
      .
      He would also be a great influence on Puig 😉

  8. Joc’s new swing doesn’t incorporate his lower half – it looks like he’s swinging a scythe or something. He’s not going to hit for any power with his current swing. The value that he’s had on offense has been OBP and power (the Braintrust loves the 3 run HR and has never looked to assemble an offense characterized by contact or speed) and if current trends continue I doubt that he’ll be with the team for long.

    On defense he runs very good routes and gets to the ball. He runs better routes than any other CF on the team in my opinion.

    From what I’ve read Verdugo doesn’t have the footspeed to be a regular CF. His best position is reputed to be RF without the power typical of a RF. They have Puig under team control for another year and unless they trade him, Verdugo won’t be playing there until 2020 at the earliest. His OBP in the minors is .361 so he gets on base but he has 36 SB in 4+ seasons in the minors so I don’t know about his baserunning.

    I worry about Seager. As I have found in my research, only 25% of MLB pitchers who have had Tommy John surgery have come back to throw over 100 major league innings following the surgery. Position players don’t have the surgery often but they don’t always recover either. Remember Carl Crawford’s throwing arm? The list of players who have had the surgery is interesting:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_baseball_players_who_underwent_Tommy_John_surgery

    I don’t see Seager playing 2B. He’s 6’5″ and it will be too hard for him to make the pivot and do the other things that 2B have to do at that height. I can maybe see him at 1B or at 3B, so if he can’t play SS the Dodgers have a problem.

    I don’t think the Braintrust is going to sign any big money free agents – no Harper, no Machado. They will probably try to retain Kershaw if he opts out but at this point it’s not clear either that he will opt out or that they will pay him enough to keep him. The best predictor of future events is the past and the only free agents that the Braintrust has signed (other than their own – Jansen and Turner) have been injury-prone pitchers (Anderson, McCarthy, Kazmir and Hill – the Fearful Foursome) or some low-cost types. Banish the thought from your heads.

    1. Why differentiate “their own” free agents from others?
      ,
      Just curious, are they not all on the open market?

      1. Sure – but name one free agent they’ve signed outside of Turner and Jansen for big $$.

        1. Who cares as long as they spend the money.

          If I spend all my money on domestic cars, i’m still of interest to German car companies when I’m looking for a new car.

          1. if you never buy German cars, they might be interested in you but you won’t be interested in them

          2. Again, you are extrapolating a TON from a simple data point.

            The Dodgers trade for top end talent, they trade for middle end talent, they trade for cheap talent.
            The Dodgers scout top end talent, they scout low end talent, and they scout cheap talent.
            The Dodgers pay for top end talent, they pay for medium talent and they pay for cheap talent.

            Simply because they haven’t signed an external free agent yet would be a mind-boggling stupid reason to infer they will not.

            Up until Yu Darvish, they never traded for a Japanese player from a team in Texas. By your logic, we should have assumed they never would make that trade simply because they hadn’t. Blindingly inane.

    2. I agree with you said with the caveat that trading for Machado helps them now and might give them a leg up in signing him as a free agent should the Dodgers learn that Seager can’t make the shortstop throws by then. You made the case for trading Verdugo so why not trade him for Machado?
      .
      If they trade for Machado, I would hope they would not give back much of the improved offense that he brings by keeping Forsythe at second instead of shifting Taylor to second.

  9. What is maddening to me is the number of apportunities Joc and Baez continue to receive. I just believe we can do better.

  10. I for one never had any lofty expectations for Joc. He was an 11th round draft pick out of high school as a CF, nothing special. He was never considered to have a high ceiling. And yet he was a September callup as a 22 year old, and was an All Star at 23. IMO he exceeded expectations. After the HR Derby, Joc completely went into the tank, and has never really fully recovered. He has changed his approach completely this year at 26.
    .
    I do think it is somewhat unfair to say Joc hasn’t worked hard in trying to improve. IMO he has tried too hard with his ever-changing batting stance. It just has not worked at all for him. But at 26, he can’t get better? There is no question as to who has more potential…Joc or Puig. And yet everyone wanted to keep Puig because of his potential. His attitude was a problem, but look at the potential. Yes he had a tough go of it (very tough go), after defecting from Cuba. But as we are all reminded, baseball is a results game, and neither Joc nor Puig were getting results. Puig has never fulfilled his expectations (except with his arm). But at a year older than Joc, Puig is still too young to give up on, but Joc is done?
    .
    Joc is not blocking anyone. Joc is a #4 OF. Toles was blocked by Kemp. Toles needed to play every day in OKC after being off a full year. He should never have been on the bench in LA when he could play every day. He was supposed to stay in OKC until the old man got hurt. Baseball is a funny game. Kemp is playing like an AS, and Toles got hurt and has been out since April 13. 6 weeks for a hammy? And Joc is not the problem on this offense. I know many out there say that the problem with Puig was that he was hitting the ball hard but right at people. And yet when Bum kept showing where Joc was near the top of the NL batters with exit velocity, that was irrelevant. I am consistent. It was irrelevant with Joc, just like it is irrelevant with Puig. Maybe teams know how to defend Puig, and they can defend anything he hits regardless of how hard it is. Ichiro, Gwynn, Rose, Butler…never had great exit velos. Exit velocity is an overrated stat. Getting on base is not.
    .
    Joc is not blocking Verdugo. I like Alex Verdugo. I do not care about the tats, the piercings, the cross, etc. He is a solid gap to gap hitter who will never hit with much power without hurting his bat to ball skills. If he did try to work on power this off-season it has not paid off. He has all of 4 HR’s in OKC. Let’s look at Verdugo’s 1st year at AAA comparatively to say…Joc’s.
    .
    Joc (22) – 2014 (Albuquerque) – .303/.435/.582/1.017. 33 HR’s, 78 RBI’s, 100 BB, and 149 K. 33 SB.
    Alex (21) – 2017 (OKC) – .314/.389/.436/.825. 6 HR’s, 62 RBI’s, 52 BB, and 50K. 2 SB.
    .
    Not knowing who they were, which player would you say would be a better ML player? The point is minor league stats are just that…minor league. Joc’s best value was to be traded before he came onto the ML scene. Maybe the same is true for Alex. Maybe not. Maybe Verdugo will hit like Tony Gwynn, or maybe he will hit like Chris Gwynn.
    .
    Not every player has to be a star on the team. Some are very good complimentary players, and IMO that is what Joc is for the Dodgers. I hope Joc does get traded, because I think he will play much better away from LA than with them. I will probably become more of a Joc fan once he does leave.
    .
    When was the last Dodger to hit 3 HR’s in a WS? Reggie Smith 1977, and no LA Dodger before Reggie. Not bad for a #4 OF.

    1. AC

      I respect everything you say, and but even you, didn’t think Joc would get this much playing time, at the beginning of the season.

      Roberts went out of his way, to get Joc in the line up, at the expense of Kemp, early before Corey went out.

      I don’t think they would have kept Toles in AAA all year, with the way, he started hitting.

      Maybe after Toles was sent down, he over did it, to try to prove he belonged in the bigs, and that caused his hammy issue.

      I don’t know that happened, but I could understand , if Toles felt that way.

      Puig did play well for almost two seasons, but I felt the same way about Puig, until last year.

      I changed my mind about Puig, only after I saw he was keeping with the program, with Turner Ward, and so did Al.

      But like I already told Bum, I think Joc is doing the right thing now, but I feel he should have done this a lot sooner, then this year.

      I actually think he is being more of a team player on offense, this year too.

      But since this is Joc’s fourth year, and because he has been given so many chances, and he hasn’t always took advantage of those many chances, it is hard to believe that Joc will finally take advantage of yet, another chance.

      1. MJ, you are absolutely right. I did not expect Joc to get much playing time. But he has, and he has done relatively well. Considering only players with 100+ AB, he is #3 in OBP and tied for 4th in OPS for the Dodgers. In a key DH against the Nats, he was leadoff and was critical in getting the Dodgers the lead in the 1st inning in both games (two wins). He has outplayed both Kike’ and Puig at this point.
        .
        Maybe Toles would have been better. We will never know. But this much is true, Toles went out on April 13 with what was considered to be a mild hamstring injury (at the time). The word was that he was going to be given a full 10 days just to make sure. And that was 6 weeks ago. There have been rumors about a bad attitude and/or a major problem with manager Bill Hasselman. They are only rumors, and I have no way of verifying nor does anyone else, or we would certainly have heard for certain.
        .
        One other note. Joc rightly gets hammered for his inability to hit LHP. But in 2014 at AAA, in 164 AB’s against LHP, he slashed .299/.422/.598/1.020. So it hasn’t always been that Joc was bad against LHP. And yet there are those that say it should be Kike’ who should get the full time gig even though he can’t hit RHP. Contrast Joc’s minor league stats against LHP with Kike’ against RHP. In 2013, Kike’s last full year in MiLB he slashed .229/.283/.366/.649 at AA. In 2014 at AAA, before he was called up, Kike’ slashed against RHP .196/.274/.339/.613. So while Joc cannot hit LHP, and Kike’ cannot hit RHP, which player showed that they were able to go against those numbers when they were in the minors? I only show that because some want to let Kike’ hit against all pitchers but not Joc. Kike’ has never hit RHP, while Joc has hit LHP. Kike’ may be the best utility player playing today (okay maybe #2 after Javy Baez). But that is what he is. He is not an everyday player.
        .
        MJ, I know you have softened your position on Joc, and that is to be commended. But others have not, and I do not understand some of the dislike. He hasn’t played well at all in the past, but since the beginning of last year’s WS, maybe Joc has turned a corner. He is not a bad person. He does not have a bad attitude. He may have got a lot more opportunities than many would like, but he certainly is not the only one (right Yasiel?). He may be a clown (but so is Kike’, the banana man). He may not have a lot of fans, but he does deserve to be recognized for what he has done for the Dodgers from the WS through this year to date. And I still think that it is best for him and the Dodgers if Joc got traded.
        .
        By the way Bum, I would have zero objection to including Alex Verdugo in a trade for Machado. But I am not inclined to include both Dennis Santana and Gavin Lux. I just do not believe the Dodgers will spend what it will take to get Manny. But what does scare me is that I do think the DBacks will absolutely be in the discussion for Machado at the deadline, as they were for JDM last year. I also have no doubt the Dodgers can beat anything the DBacks offer if that is what they want to do. The DBacks farm is fairly bare. I just do not think they will.

        1. The article we were talking about wanted to trade Lux, Santana, and Verdugo for Machado. I suggested the Dodgers swap Santana for somebody else such as Alvarez.

        2. AC

          Remember last year we didn’t think the Dbacks had good enough players in their minor league system, to get JD Martinez.

          I think Joc is being more of a team player on offense this year, and that is why I feel a little different, about him

          About Toles, the announcer for the OKC Dodgers said yesterday, that Toles was in Arizona at the Dodgers facility there, just working on trying to get healthy, and they are just being over careful, with him.

          He is not even with the team in Oklahoma, so I don’t understand how he can have an issue, with Hasselman.

          And as you know, before that, he was playing really well.

          I know a lot of Dodger fans, were not happy that Toles was sent down.

          And when he got so hot, they started a Free Toles, on Twitter, to get Toles called up.

    1. Hanley is so up and down. I have no idea what kind of shape he is in, but my son-in-law who is a big Red Sox fan says the team got better by getting rid of him. He had a good year two years ago, but sucks this year and last. He’s more of a head case than Kemp ever was. My vote is NO!

      AC has changed my mind. Let’s trade Puig too… and Forsythe. What could the Dodgers get for Puig, Pederson and Forsythe? How about some prospects?

      1. Toles CF
      2. Verdugo RF
      3. Turner 3B
      4. Bellinger 1B
      5. Kemp LF
      6. Grandal C
      7. Taylor SS
      8. Barnes 2B

      Why not?

      1. Why not? Because Toles needs a solid backup until he proves he can stay in the lineup and you traded away that backup. Verdugo ain’t what you think he is, at least not yet.
        .
        Wait until next year.

      2. You got to admit though, Hanley had one of the prettiest swings eyes have ever seen. It really is too bad there was too much baggage in the way of him being as great as he could of been. Greinke too thought he had too much baggage! Yes that was intended.

  11. To stir the pot a little more, I would be fine if Kemp played RF and Puig traded if the return for Puig were intriguing.

  12. There is a lot to chew on in the comments today, good takes by all. IMO there is not a trade brewing and neither Joc nor Puig are going to be moved or anyone else of note until the deadline and even then probably prospects.

    I say they must not like how Joc plays CF because they keep putting Cody there but maybe they just want Muncy’s bat in the lineup. I agree with Dodgerrick that Joc takes the best routes to the ball of any OF’s they have. I don’t like when the play Joc in LF and Kemp in RF and sit Puig but everyone is getting days off right now.

    Solano went on the DL with a hammy, they say 14 days or so. That ends any discussion for now of him being called up to play SS or 2B. I think Utley will get less run and Barnes will get some time at 2B with Logan being the primary guy for a couple weeks to see if his bat wakes up.

    Today’s lineup:
    1) Taylor…SS
    2) Turner.3B
    3) Kemp…LF
    4) Kike……CF ?!
    5) Puig…..RF
    6) Cody…1B
    7) Logan..2B
    8) Barnes.C
    9) Ross……P
    I like the lineup but Kike hitting 4th? Maybe he has good numbers against Clayton Richard. If they are OK with Kike in CF they should be OK with Joc as well, Joc is a better CF than Kike. Barnes gets another start and with the off day makes 3 days off in a row for Grandal. Maybe he needs a blow, but Barnes has only 3 PB all year and calls a good game. Pitchers only have 2 WP all year with him back there.

    I also say no to Hanley returning to the Dodgers. He runs hot and cold mood wise and is not worth the risk to team chemistry. He also needs to DH at this point in his career.

    The starters have all been effective and being allowed to pitch deeper into games. Buehler and Stripling have really stepped up and proved capable. With Kershaw, then Hill, then Ryu and Urias all due back at some point I don’t think this will be an issue for them.

    The bullpen may be in flux and perhaps they should have picked up Colome as the Rays traded him and Denard Span for prospects. The Rays also traded for Wilmer Font. I believe the team could benefit with a solid set up man for Kenly but has to be the right price and right fit.

    1. Typo: Barnes has no PB all year. Grandal has 3, and pitchers have had 10 WP with him behind the plate.

      1. FYI, Barnes has 1/3 the innings behind the plate as Grandal and Grandal’s Range Factor is 10.07 to Barnes 9.21, so there really is almost no difference.

  13. Two things for the record:

    1. I do not hate Joc – I just believe it is best for him and the Dodgers to move on.

    2. I do not think the Dodgers would trade for Machado, but I would trade Verdugo, Alvarez and Smith for him. Maybe throw in Joc! …and I do not see why the Dodgers would not try and sign him. The O’s would have to take Forsythe’s contract too. Not all pitchers come back from TJ, but they have set mechanics every pitch. How about Corey who has to throw falling away from the infield or knees? It’s possible he may not have the arm to play SS or 3B and he’s too big for 2B (IMHO), although DJ LeMahieu is only an inch shorter (so there is that). If he can’t make the throws, I believe he could be a good 1B, as he has a “soft” glove, but we have another one of those. Maybe he goes to LF? Puig gets traded and Kemp goes to RF pending Peters, Diaz, Toles, Beaty, et al. I hope Corey can come back as a SS… but I have my doubts.

    1. Point taken, just trying to figure out why Grandal gets 3 days off in a row, he is a switch hitter. Maybe they don’t like him as much from the right side hitting, maybe he is tired or nicked up, or maybe it’s the defense aspect. Not passing judgement, just a curious development IMO. Barnes has not hit like last year but has a good OBP and has been steady behind the dish. It’s a good problem to have for a team to have 2 quality catchers.

      1. Vegas

        I actually think Puig could play center better then Joc, because Puig is faster.

        I think Kike is better at getting balls hit in front of him, and Joc is better at going back on balls.

    2. I think the Utley rule would benefit Seager enough for him to be able to play second. Prior to the Utley rule the second baseman had to turn the double play with his back to the runner and needed to be a ballerina to avoid getting taken out. Now, not so much.

  14. I WROTE THIS THREE YEARS AGO:

    Are you in a hole?

    If all you see is just dirt, dirt and more dirt… maybe you are in a hole. Yep, that’s a hole.

    What do you do if you find yourself in a hole?

    Well, you look to the left, you look to the right, you look down and all you see is dirt.

    You might look up and see some light, but “Is it a train?”

    Mostly all you see is dirt… dirt, and more dirt.

    Dirt is brown, black and ugly… if you are in a hole.

    Pretty soon you are feeling sorry for yourself: “Look at all this dirt – I don’t have a chance!”

    “This is no fair.” “Whoever put me in this hole is responsible for this.”

    “They are out to get me.”

    “What can I do?” “There’s nothing I can do.” “It’s somebody else’s fault.”

    Here’s the deal: Some idiot said that if you find yourself in a hole, you need to stop digging.

    I beg to differ. If you are in a hole, you need to START digging!

    But you have to dig with a purpose. Dig that dirt off the sides of the hole and pile it on the bottom, so that you can step up out of the hole… and you might have to dig for a long time.

    You will get tired, you will get weary, but you have to keep digging, because no one is going to dig it for you.

    Digging is hard. You don’t wait for someone else to dig you out. You don’t blame someone else. Bloom where you are planted. Step up. Shut up, and start digging!

    Some social program won’t save you. The government won’t save you. Dig! I mean… Dig!

    Oh, you don’t want to dig? Then you are at someone else’s mercy.

    Maybe there will be a flood and you will float out of the hole… or maybe you will drown in the process.

    Maybe someone will throw a rope down and pull you out… or hang you!

    You see, when you start digging, you have control – you won’t drown and you won’t hang!

    You will get what you believe!

    Dig it… or not!

    “When you see the invisible, you can do the impossible.” — The Mountainmover

    1. “Strive for the impossible because it makes the possible seem effortless.” -Matt Beaty

  15. Stripling showing why Roberts has always had a shine on him.

    Enrique coming around against lefties and being solid against righties would be nice.

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