In an article in the Los Angeles Times, Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier talked about several things, but mostly about the team losing All-Star right-hander Zack Greinke and the season ahead.
Ethier is coming off of a good 2015 campaign that saw him put up a slash line of .294/.366/.486 in 445 plate appearances. He still sees the larger picture, though.
“It hurts big losing Zack,” Ethier said at an event in San Bernardino, part of the “Dodgers Love L.A.” caravan. “I don’t care what you say. It hurts losing Zack.”
This isn’t breaking news. The Dodgers are losing the runner-up in the 2015 National League Cy Young Award voting. Last season, Greinke posted a 19-3 record while striking out 200 batters in 222.2 innings and finishing with a microscopic 1.66 ERA.
Now, the team hopes to replace him with a variety of names. But that doesn’t mean Ethier doesn’t like what he sees out of the team this coming season:
“I think we have the depth, and the players we need,” Ethier said. “It might not be as splashy as it was on paper in the past, but good teams are not always the ones you think about or expect.”
Ethier’s not wrong there. The Kansas City Royals of last season could be seen as similar to the Dodgers this season. They weren’t flashy on paper, and the Royals had their own question marks going into the season due to their rotation and if their 2014 playoff run was a fluke. They answered those questions in resounding fashion.
It’ll be interesting to see how the Dodgers do in 2016, namely how they replace Greinke’s level of production, but they still should be really good.
The Dodgers have a tough road ahead of them without Greinke, yet they still pack the level of talent that most other teams would kill to have. That fact, apparently, is not lost on Andre Ethier.