Dodgers Injury News and Notes

Things are maybe, possibly, starting to turn around for the Los Angeles Dodgers. They won their first series after losing five in a row, the short series that it was. They also won two games in a row for the first time in almost a month.

The Dodgers now sit at 20-17, third place in the NL West and a half game behind the San Diego Padres for second, and two and a half games out of first behind the San Francisco Giants, owners of the best record in the National League.

The Dodgers’ bats seem to have finally woken up, scoring six and seven runs in the last two games, respectively. Home runs have also seemed to have re-enter the equation for scoring options.

The good thing is that the Dodgers had a great record before they started on their slide, and there’s a lot of parity in the league right now. There’s no team that’s clearly heads above the rest, at least for the moment. The Dodgers should be able to climb back into the driver’s seat easily.

While weathering this slide and all of the injuries, the Dodgers’ starting pitching has been what’s keeping them in games, even with one of their ranks just having Tommy John surgery. Tuesday, Dustin May posted a picture of himself after undergoing the surgery to repair the elbow of his right arm. He could return as early as fall of 2022.

David Price, once a candidate for the spot May previously occupied, is getting closer to returning to the bullpen. Price recently threw off the mound at Dodger Stadium, and participated in fielding drills. “Didn’t seem like he was compensating at all in his delivery, and the stuff was good,” Manager Dave Roberts said.

Price’s next step will be facing live hitters. Since he will not be building up innings, he is expected to not need to go on a rehab assignment before he returns.

AJ Pollock is expected to return to the lineup on Friday. The outfielder experienced a low grade hamstring strain in Anaheim, but with rest has managed to stay of the injured list.

Edwin Rios will have surgery next week to repair a partially torn labrum in his right shoulder. He will miss the rest of the season. This issue could explain why he was having a rough time at the plate this season.

Thursday, the Dodgers are enjoying their third day off in eight days. They will welcome the Miami Marlins and former manager Don Mattingly for a weekend series starting Friday.

Pitching matchups are slated to be Friday, Clayton Kershaw and Sandy Alcantara, both number 22s. Alcantara is 1-2 with a 2.72 ERA in eight games. Saturday will see Trevor Bauer take the mound for the Dodgers. The Marlins have not yet announced who they will be sending to counter him. Sunday will be Pablo Lopez and Walker Buehler.

How High Is Gavin Lux’s Ceiling?

No doubt, the 413-foot bomb that Gavin Lux launched in the eighth inning of Tuesday night’s victory was one of the most clutch moments the team has seen in weeks. While there have been a few other bright spots here and there offensively, the Dodgers just might find a way to put together a string of success should more of these huge plays occur in critical moments.

Lux in this role is interesting because he’s probably one of the least expected to perform these types of heroics, especially when considering his start to the 2021 season. Once ranked as the organization’s top prospect, several issues kept him off the big-league diamond last year until late August. When he finally arrived in 2020, he ended up hitting just .175/.246/.349 for the year with three homers over 63 AB in 19 games.

Prior to Tuesday’s opener against the Mariners, Lux was slashing .209/.247/.267 with no homers in 86 AB this year. Undeniably, moments like his go-ahead blast are not just huge for the team, but they’re also paramount in building a player’s confidence. Maybe his home run on Tuesday was one of those confidence builders.

When thinking about the future of Lux, one can’t help but consider what could potentially happen with Corey Seager. If Seager ends up in a different uniform next season, some fans feel that Lux might have a shot at an everyday shortstop role. Should Seager return, perhaps Lux might settle in as the regular second baseman, something the team hasn’t really had since the days of Chase Utley in 2016-17.

However, before we look too far ahead, Lux will most definitely need to prove his value before he’s considered as a long-term solution in the middle infield.

I’m not normally a huge fan of pre-season projections, but I still like to look at them to generate at least an idea as to how a player is perceived by a computer. Entering this year, ZiPS had Lux pegged to hit .246/.304/.446 with 16 doubles, six triples, 17 long balls, and 65 RBI. Those are not overwhelming numbers by any means—especially for a former Rookie of the Year favorite—but I’d bet if you’d ask Dodgers’ management if they’d take that production from Lux by season’s end, the answer would be an astounding “yes.”

The bigger question is whether those types of averages would warrant him everyday playing time over the next several years.

Sometimes, trying to determine if a prospect might be successful in the majors is a complete crapshoot. We see first-round blue chippers who are never able to figure out an MLB slider. Conversely, we see undrafted free agents latch on somewhere only to produce big league careers that last years.

Contrary to popular belief, second base is a crowded spot right now in the Los Angeles organization. Down on the farm, there are guys like Michael Busch, Omar Estevez, and Jacob Amaya who show promise, but none of them have the well-rounded tools of Lux. Busch might be a better all-around hitter, but many feel he’s lacking in the glove and hands department. Estevez is viewed as a potential defensive wizard, but his production at the plate is less than desired, even in the minors.

At the major league level, in addition to Lux’s 23 appearances there, we’ve seen Zach McKinstry, Max Muncy, Chris Taylor, and Sheldon Neuse all log time there. Austin Barnes has even made three appearances at the keystone.

The fact that skipper Dave Roberts continues to award Lux the lion’s share of time at second base emphasizes the team’s commitment to giving the youngster an extended opportunity to prove his value. No question, based on the tools we’ve seen, Lux perhaps has the highest ceiling of all the prospective second basemen in the system. Whether he’s able to maximize his tools and potential down the road, though, is an entirely different story.

Will Trevor Bauer’s Comments Have Any Effect on Dodgers’ Losing Ways?

“I don’t necessarily want to speak for the team. But I’m pissed personally. I don’t like losing. I want to win. That’s why I came here. And we are not playing up to our capabilities right now, so I’m mad.”

After yet another one-run loss, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Trevor Bauer vented to reporters on the state of his current team.

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Is There Any Relief in Sight for a Struggling Bullpen?

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(Rob Schumacher/The Arizona Republic via USA TODAY NETWORK)

Perhaps the funniest thing about the Dodgers’ victory over the Angels on Saturday night was the notion that most fans out there, as well as the players, coaching staff, and management, were hoping to add a few insurance runs late in the game after putting a whopping 13 runs on the board early.

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The Real Reasons Why the Dodgers Aren’t Winning

Things have only gotten worse in the world of the Los Angeles Dodgers since the last time we talked, dear reader. The team that some said would never lose again has done a complete 180 and may never win again.

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2021 Dodgers: Best Team Ever or Unluckiest Team Ever?

If you thought at the beginning of the season that watching the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2021 was just going to be a cake walk of a year, you would have been mistaken.

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Are Dodgers Showing Signs of a World Series Hangover ?

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Many fans ask themselves if the proverbial World Series hangover is even real. Before the Dodgers won it all in 2020, the two previous World Champions Boston Red Sox and Washington Nationals both failed to make the post season the following year.

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Dodgers Head to Milwaukee Hoping to Start Winning Streak

(Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

Have the Los Angeles Dodgers finally broken out of their slumping ways?

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Have Opposition Stolen Bases Become a Problem for Dodgers?

(Kevin Jairaj/USA TODAY Sports)

The Los Angeles Dodgers have lost six out of their last eight games, but still find themselves having one of the top records in baseball. Ironically enough, their current 15-7 record through 22 games is the same record they had through 22 games in their championship run last year.

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Dodgers News and Notes: Padres Series, Injury Updates, More

(Photo by Kelly Gavin/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

For most teams in baseball, sitting where the Los Angeles Dodgers are right now would be a thing of beauty and excitement. For most fans of the Dodgers, coming off their first series loss of the year, and to the San Diego Padres no less, it’s anything but fun.

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