Dodgers Lineups: More Thoughts About the Leadoff Spot

Nearly a quarter into this shortened 60 game season, the Dodgers stand with a 7-4 record and tied for second place in the National League West. Throughout those 11 games, there have been multiple players who’ve hit first in the batting order.

The majority of time hitting first has been divided between Max Muncy and Mookie Betts, with Joc Pederson making an appearance last night in that spot homering on the first pitch he saw.

After Monday’s game, manager Dave Roberts said it’s a possibility that Pederson will see more time in that spot against right-handed pitching. Earlier this season, Roberts said most of the leadoff position would be divided by Betts and Muncy.

With Betts still dealing with a finger injury keeping his status day to day, Pederson can likely see more time at the number one spot until Betts fully recovers.

During the 2019 season with the Red Sox, Betts saw most of his at-bats from the leadoff spot, 413 of 597 to be exact. In the number one spot, his batting average was .283 and he had an OBP of .347. Betts also walked 64 times and scored 94 runs. He has a career batting average of .303 while hitting leadoff as it is the spot where he’s seen the most at-bats.

Muncy has struggled like many hitters to start the season as he’s only batting .200, but has hit three homers. Against the Padres on Monday night, he was hitless in four at-bats. Batting first this season, Muncy has only registered three hits in 20 at-bats. In comparison, Betts is 7-for-21 batting first this season.

Muncy last season only saw one plate appearance in the leadoff spot, with most of his at-bats came batting second. He had a.250 batting average in the two-hole while also knocking in 33. The other spot he saw a lot of at-bats was fifth where he averaged .242 and drove in 24.

Pederson last season was the Dodgers primary leadoff hitter, garnering 441 plate appearances in that spot. His batting average was .250 and he had an OBP of.342, while also tallying 33 homers in that position. He also scored 76 runs and walked 43 times. While this year he’s seen most of his at-bats seventh in the order, his only time being leadoff was Monday night going 1-for-4 with a homer.

With Muncy struggling in the leadoff spot, it will more than likely he goes to second in the batting order. He can drive in more runners from that spot, and we’ve seen him make a couple of loud outs that sometimes can move runners over. 

It would be expected that once Betts recovers, he will most likely return to the main leadoff spot, which was the idea coming into the season, being that he is also the biggest base-stealing threat on the Dodgers. With Pederson seeing time in the leadoff position against right handers, Betts could move back to second in the order and Muncy perhaps to fifth.

Roberts alluded that Pederson probably will bat leadoff more this series against the Padres. Betts’s availability is still uncertain, so we can expect Pederson in that spot. 

Dennis discussed a similar leadoff comparison between Betts and Muncy at the beginning of the year.

The Dodgers will look to even the series tonight when they face right-hander Dinelson Lamet. Los Angeles will send 22-year-old Dustin May to the mound for his third start this season. So far, May has given up two runs in 7.2 innings making starts against the Astros and the Giants.

The Dodgers fell to the Padres 5-4 in the opening game, as Walker Buehler gave up three solo home runs over five innings pitched, while Brusdar Graterol gave up two runs to take the loss.

The first pitch tonight is set for 6:10 p.m. Los Angeles time.

 

The Hitters You Didn’t Expect to Lead Offensively

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(Photo: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

The Dodgers beat the Diamondbacks Thursday night for their third win in a row and fifth overall. Seven games into the season, the Dodgers have a record of 5-2, and their two MVPs, Mookie Betts and Cody Bellinger, are batting .185 combined. However, the Dodgers still continue to find ways to win games.

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Dodgers Place Alex Wood on IL, Prepare for Houston Series

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On Tuesday morning, the Dodgers placed left-handed pitcher Alex Wood on the injured list and recalled right-handed pitcher Josh Sborz. Wood was placed on the injured list due to shoulder inflammation.

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After Successful Season Opener, Dodgers Turn to Ross Stripling in Game 2

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The Dodgers started off their season with a 8-1 win Thursday night against the rival Giants. Using a five-run seventh inning, the Dodgers sent 11 batters to the plate to secure the victory.

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Dodgers News and Notes: Jake McGee Signs One-Year Deal, Gavin Lux Optioned

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(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

With one exhibition game left before the Dodgers begin their regular season Thursday against the Giants, the front office made a few personnel moves Tuesday morning.

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2020 Might Be Now or Never for Dodgers

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(Getty Images photo)

The Dodgers have been lurking around the top of the baseball kingdom for the past seven years. They almost tasted all the glory. They’ve been so close, whether it was one broken Hanley Ramirez rib in 2013 or the bang of a trash can, followed by a charging whistle, in 2017.

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Predicting the Dodgers’ 2020 Regular-Season Record

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(Photo Credit: Rick Scuteri/USA TODAY Sports)

The Dodgers open their 60-game shortened-season schedule against the Giants on July 23. They surely will want to sprint right out of the gates in the most unusual baseball season ever. During their run of  seven consecutive division titles, the Dodgers would have only won two division titles if the seasons would have ended after 60 games. Usually, the team starts hovering above .500  and then wears out their opponents later as the season progresses.

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5 Players Who Could Be Dodgers’ Team MVP in 2020

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With just 60 games being played this season, baseball fans are bound to see new history entered into the books in some shape or form. Baseball could see an unlikely champion, MVP, or some astronomical stat never imagined. The Dodgers find themselves with three former MVPs on their roster. While the team is loaded with talent, we take a look at who will step up as the most valuable player on the team. Due to the shortened season, there will be no pitchers on the list.

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Who Makes Next Move in MLB’s Latest Economic Negotiations?

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Considering how far apart both sides are after offering up their latest rounds of respective proposals, there’s certainly not much time left to reach an agreement if there will be some semblance of an MLB season in 2020.

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Dodgers Opinions: Baseball in July, New Rules & Other Thoughts

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As we approach the second full month without baseball, we know that MLB is doing all it can to figure out how to have some actual baseball action this year. Some crazy ideas have been broached in respect to this, both on the location and in-game aspects.

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