Dodgers Hope Justin Turner Provides Spark to Sputtering Offense

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To say the Dodgers‘ offense has been lackluster lately would be a bit of an understatement. After scoring 10 runs in Milwaukee last Friday, the Dodgers have only scored five runs in five games since then. Granted, they were facing some of the best pitchers they’ve face so far in Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg, but still the offense has left something to be desired.

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Dodgers Lineups: What’s the Problem Against Lefty Pitching?

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(Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

Last year, a few stubborn fans who didn’t care to comprehend simple math believed it to be a season-long jinx. But only ten games into the 2017 campaign, the struggles the Dodgers have been wrestling with against left-handed pitching have become so obvious that other teams are realigning their pitching rotation when they see a series vs. Los Angeles appear on their respective schedules.

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Should Joc Pederson Receive More Plate Appearances Against Lefty Pitching?

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(Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports)

So far during the young 2017 season, one of the more common lineup themes of the Dodgers has been to employ utility man Enrique Hernandez in center field against left-handed pitching, while stashing away Joc Pederson on the pine for possible appearances later in games against righty pitching, or for his skills as a defensive replacement.

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Dodgers Lineups: One Conceivable Batting Order at Triple-A Oklahoma City

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(Mandatory Credit: Michael Spomer/Cal Sports Media)

With all the endless discussions currently in the news surrounding the prospective layouts of the club’s Opening Day 25-man roster, many fans of the Dodgers can’t help but envision the overwhelming amount of depth and skill lurking on the fringe of the bigs at Triple-A Oklahoma City. If the major league squad stays relatively healthy and productive throughout the regular season, the crew at OKC will not only possess some of the best player talent in the Pacific Coast League, but will also be almost untouchable en route to yet another American Northern divisional crown.

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Dodgers 25-Man Roster: Who’s Backing Up First Base?

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One of several highlights during Tuesday’s annual Cactus League media day occurred when GM Farhan Zaidi suggested that the Dodgers intend to find more days off for first baseman Adrian Gonzalez over the course of the regular season.

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Dodgers Lineups: Assembling a Functional Batting Order for 2017

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(Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

The Dodgers finally have their second baseman. With the addition of Logan Forsythe, the infield is finally complete. Manager Dave Roberts has says that he would like to use Forsythe as his primary leadoff batter. So what will the rest of the lineup behind him look like?

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Dodgers Lineups: Better Leadoff Options Should Exist in 2017

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Depending on how the dust settles on all of the Dodgers‘ trade ventures at the end of the winter, Los Angeles should have at least several viable options to hit at the top of the batting order in 2017, creating more mathematically favorable alternatives when writing out the lineup cards.

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Dodgers Lineups: Andrew Toles Makes Things Happen

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(Photo Credit: Jeff Roberson/AP)

For whoever the primary person is that’s responsible for writing the Dodgers‘ daily lineups these days, it must be difficult to leave Andrew Toles out of the batting order on any given occasion.

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Dodgers Lineups: What’s the Problem Against Left-Handed Pitching?

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(Photo Credit: Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports)

The good news surrounding the four-game weekend series against the Diamondbacks is that the Dodgers will be taking hacks against three right-handed pitchers, with the lone southpaw coming in the form of Robbie Ray in the finale on Sunday.

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Dodgers’ Ethier Avoids Potential Foul Ball Disaster

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(Editor’s note: A more recent update regarding Andre Ethier’s injury was compiled on March 22)

Dodgers fans watching Friday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks endured a bit of a scare in the fourth inning, as fan favorite Andre Ethier fouled a ball off his right leg and was eventually carted to the clubhouse.

Ethier was facing Arizona starter Zack Godley when he ripped a foul off the inside of his right shin. He fell to the ground and wavered with pain until trainer Neil Rampe and manager Dave Roberts arrived at his side.

Ethier was able to finish the at-bat and draw a walk, but was replaced by pinch-runner Rico Noel, who advanced to second on a wild pitch, stole third and scored on a throwing error by Arizona catcher Welington Castillo.

Upon exiting the game, he limped noticeably to the Dodgers’ dugout, and ultimately needed the assistance of a golf cart to make it to the center field clubhouse.

Later Friday evening, X-rays taken on Ethier’s leg came back negative, but he’ll remain day-to-day with a severe bruise.

Upon observing the incident and seeing Ethier carted off the field, Roberts was immediately concerned.

“Just to see him work every day and how he prepares himself is pretty impressive, really,” Roberts told Doug Padilla of ESPN. “And he plays the game the right way. Just seeing him work every day I have grown to appreciate what kind of player he is. Obviously, again, I’m hopeful that there is no fracture or anything like that. We’ll see what happens.”

Ethier hit leadoff on Friday for the second time in three days for the Dodgers, and may be considered one of several options to bat first when the regular season begins on April 4. In more than 1,400 career regular season games since debuting with the Dodgers in 2006, he’s hit out of every spot in the order except leadoff.

Ethier ended up going 1-for-2 with a walk and a run scored on Friday. So far this spring he’s hit safely in nine of his 10 games, going 10-for-23 (.435) with a .652 OBP and a .517 slugging percentage. He also has one home run, a triple and four walks to his credit. In his two games batting leadoff, he is 2 for 4 with two walks.

The 34-year old outfielder hit .294 in 2015, the best clip since his 2008 season, and collected 54 RBIs and 13 home runs, both his highest since 2012.