Friday, March 21, 2014

Lessons and questions from 2014 Dodgers' spring training

The Cactus League portion of the Dodgers' year is officially over. There are a lot of questions on this team. So what did we learn?

 Pitchers 

  • Ross Stripling - out for the year; Tommy John surgery 
  • Javy Guerra - 8 IP / 4BB / 5 K = designated for assignment
  • Brandon League - 16 batters faced, 1 K, only 6 outs, 16 ERA = a real problem. 
  • Josh Beckett - The rib removal seems to have helped. He's on the mound and looking "meh." Hopefully with some more time, he can be a contributor again 
  • Seth Rosin - 11 IP / 2BB / 12 K = vindication of the curious Rule 5 pick, so how do we keep him around? 
  • Jose Dominguez - 8IP / 2 BB / 9K / 3H = want 
  • Kenley Jansen - 7IP / 1BB/ 7K/ 2H = ready 
  • Julio Urias - got in a game on the major league side and more than held his own at age 17. 
  • Dan Haren - not looking great, but OK 
  • Hyun-Jin Ryu - the one starter looking good 
  • Paul Maholm - not a good spring, but should come around to be mediocre 
  • Clayton Kershaw / Zack Greinke - not looking that sharp but expect them to turn it on 
  • J.P. Howell / Chris Perez - OK 
  • Chris Withrow - not OK. back to the minors with you 
  • Zach Lee - not ready yet 
  • Jamey Wright - if he was a non-roster invitee like usual, he'd not be on the team right now. 
  • Paco Rodriguez - supposedly discovered flaw in his mechanics that was his downfall last year. Some control issues but an OK spring all in all. 
  • Red Patterson - Got a long enough look after a decent AAA season that I think they're looking at him for any emergency starts that need to be made this year. 
  • Matt Magill - did not look horrible. Control was under control. 
  • Stephen Fife - forgotten man, barely got in a game 
  • Brian Wilson - he has a decent knuckler! 
  • Chad Billingsley - we should be seeing him sooner rather than later 

Hitters

  • Justin Turner - Hit well, fielded OK all around the infield, made the team 
  • Miguel Rojas - confounded expectations by hitting well and fielding poorly. Not going to be needed. 
  • Chone Figgins - still has a good eye. No evidence of being able to drive the ball. Fast, but not super-fast. Questionable how much he'll add right now, but the Dodgers want to give him a chance based on his approach. So much so, they cut Javy Guerra. 
  • Dee Gordon - made a lot of nice plays at 2B. 13 pounds of muscle -> four triples. Still fast. Getting smarter about his game, and working harder. Probably the opening day starter. 
  • Alex Guerrero - hit well, made the routine plays but they seem to want to start him in the minors anyway. 
  • Yasiel Puig - Starting to conjure up Andruw Jones, never a good thing. A wasted spring. He better get it together soon and adapt to the way pitchers are approaching him. 
  • Carl Crawford - looked terrible. Don't want to speculate, but just have to trust him to be there when the bell rings. 
  • Andre Ethier - Showed up prepared, looked good, great attitude. Ready to play all 3 OF spots. 
  • Matt Kemp - progressing on schedule. Beast mode cometh.
  • Joc Pederson - flashed some potential and could be ready around mid-season. 
  • Mike Baxter - for some reason, he will get AB this year. 
  • Miguel Olivo - buh bye. 
  • A.J. Ellis - terrible spring as a hitter. Good D though. 
  • Tim Federowicz - even worse spring as a hitter than A.J. 
  • Hanley Ramirez - does not look like last year's world-beater but more like the 2011/2012 Hanley. Maybe he's not getting last year's daily doses of lengthy shoulder treatment since it's just Spring. 
  • Adrian Gonzalez / Scott Van Slyke / Juan Uribe - just what you'd expect. 
  • Brendan Harris - also just what you'd expect, and not making this team. 
  • Erisbel Arruebarrena - he made it to America, but not into a game. I wouldn't be surprised to see him in the majors this year at some point anyway. Declared a willingness to play wherever he's needed.

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