The Dodgers under Andrew Friedman are known for their versatility. Both of their catchers can play 2 or 3 other positions. CT3 can play 6 positions while Cody Bellinger can play 4 positions. Max Muncy and Justin Turner can play 3 positions and David Freese can play 2 positions. However, no one can play more positions than one Enrique Hernandez.
Right about now, Kike Hernandez is the “flavor-of-the-week” for some Dodger fans and some are already anointing him the starting 2B and leadoff hitter. Not so fast! I am a huge Kike fan. In fact, I have said that he could be the next JD Martinez. I say that with only a small part of my tongue in cheek. I think Kike is ready to “break out.” I feel it! I have seen growth and maturity rise in the man and he learned a lot from Chase Utley… and is still learning as he is very close to the Silver Fox.
But, I do think Kike will continue to be the Dodgers Swiss Army Knife. If Corey Seager is healthy, I think Chris Taylor will start at 2B. Kike will be backup at 2B, SS and all three outfield spots. He will essentially play every day… at many different spots.
Some people think Kike is a hot dog. Not true! He’s more of a Bratwurst! Unlike Yasiel Puig whose antics grew thin on this teammates, Kike is a student of the game who shows up early and stays late. He’s a typical “gym rat” and is beloved by his teammates.
Chicken Strip is another Swiss Army Knife. This is something he has finally embraced. He used to only think of himself as a starter. Now he wants to be“the Kike of the pitching staff.” He said that himself. He is open to pitching wherever and whenever he is needed: an inning, three innings, a spot start, etc. Like AC says, he could be a “RH Andrew Miller.” It took Andrew Miller a while to figure it out too.
Ross has very good stuff and is continually working on new pitches and other nuances. He is a very bright and articulate guy and should flourish in his new role. That’s why I don’t see him in the starting rotation… except for an occasional spot start. I can see him near/ or over 100 innings this year… mostly out of the bullpen.
- The pitchers are certainly ahead of the hitters. That’s for sure!
- It’s a “definite maybe” that Kershaw, Buehler and Seager will all be ready by Opening Day.
- Russ Martin came back and looked none worse for the wear.
- Cabrera found out that 100 MPH doesn’t impress big league hitters.
- Other than Yordy, the Dodgers pitchers were lights out.
- Julio Urias HAS TO BE on the team… probably in the rotation.
- Adam Jones to the D-Bags… Yawn!
- Let’s do this!
I am publishing this early because I have a Craft Beer Conference Monday and Tuesday where I have an hour presentation. I have to be there at 7 AM tomorrow, so this is early.HERE’S THE LINK.