The highlight of Monday’s 9-4 Dodger win over the Cardinals was a bases-loaded double by Chris Taylor during a 14-pitch at-bat in the bottom of the sixth inning. It gave the Dodgers a 6-3 lead after having trailed 3-2.
In fact, Taylor was the star of the night, as he went 3-for-4 with four RBI, including a home run. His seven long balls are third-best on the team while his 28 RBI are tied for second.
As we now enter the month of June, the All-Star break is only a month and a half away. The Dodgers, as we all know, have had a carousel of injuries, but Taylor has helped patch that with his versatility.
Not only can Taylor play all around the field, but has been one of the more productive hitters in the Dodgers lineup.
Currently, he ranks in the Top 10 or better in several categories in the National League such as runs, OBP, OPS, wOBA and wRC+.
Taylor is first in runs in the NL with 40 and fifth in OBP at .401. Regarding his performance yesterday, I saw a question throughout social media.
The question was quite simple. It asked if Taylor deserved to be selected as an All-Star for the first time in his career. I saw some say yes and others say no. Us, as Dodgers fans, probably will give him the benefit of doubt, as we see him day in and day out, but fans of other teams may think a player on their own favorite team may be more deserving.
But, let’s take a deeper look at Taylor this season. He’s obviously seen more playing time due to injuries; however, that is not to discredit how good he is, as he’s always been an exceptional player since arriving from Seattle six seasons ago, which seems crazy to say.
Taylor has had quite a good season that has flown under the radar. His OPS is .889, as he seems to be reaching base nearly every game. The 30-year-old figures to be a free agent after this year, so if he continues to play well, the Dodgers may have to fight off a couple of clubs for his services.
Currently, he is batting .280/.401/.488 and he adds six stolen bases. Taylor also has collected 27 walks, as he has cut down on chasing balls outside of the strike zone. Although the start to this season may have been the best of his career, he did struggle recently going for 2-for-16 before Monday. However, he broke out of that mini-slump in a big way.
The Dodgers have a run differential of +73, which is the third-best in the majors, many of which can be attributed to Taylor, who has 40 runs scored.
The Dodgers have played 54 games, and Taylor is almost right on the mark with his stats from last year’s 60 game season. He has one less homer, is batting ten points higher, has one less walk, and four fewer RBI. If he continues his great approach at the plate, he can get there throughout the next couple of games.
The question of whether he is an All-Star or not remains to be seen, as there is still plenty of time left before the break. There are always external factors and other scenarios in which players can find themselves at the All-Star Game. We’ve seen players with worse stats make it, and we’ve seen several players get snubbed.
However, Taylor is rightfully in the mix, and if he continues to hit the ball well, there is nothing else to do but give him a spot he rightfully earned.
We will see if Taylor continues his success from Monday in Game 2 against the Cardinals of this three-game series. The Dodgers will go with a bullpen game, sending veteran left-hander David Price to the mound as the opener against Cardinals right-hander John Gant.
The first pitch from Dodger Stadium is scheduled at 7:10 p.m. Pacific.