David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers appeared to be in a world of trouble in August as they were without Howie Kendrick and Yasiel Puig, who were both placed on the disabled list due to hamstring injuries.

However, utility man Kiké Hernandez helped offset the losses. The 24 year old has played multiple positions for the Dodgers this season, without any noticeable drop off at any of them, but appeared to find a home in center field.

While Hernandez emerged as the club’s starter in center ahead of Joc Pederson, he acknowledged not fitting the prototypical center fielder/leadoff man mold “As a center fielder you need a guy that can cover all that ground and be a leadoff-type hitter,” he said.

“I can be a leadoff-type hitter in the sense that I can start things and get on base, but I’m not a speedster.” While Hernandez didn’t steal any bases during the regular season, he batted exceptionally well when hitting second in the lineup, posting a .442/.467/.698 slash line.

“I’m not going to steal a bunch of bases and set up stuff for other guys. I’m more of a two-hole guy, getting the guy over and stuff like that,” he said. “In center field I would say I can get the job done defensively.”

Hernandez’s ability to play multiple positions has drawn comparisons to the likes of Ben Zobrist. The utility man has made a successful career of playing several positions, which in turn has led to regular starts.

The formula is one Hernandez is confident he can fill as he isn’t worried over which position he’s playing. “Yeah, I can see that because I can do a bunch of things defensively. If I’m in the lineup it doesn’t really matter where I’m playing. I really don’t care,” he said.

One of the praises Dodgers manager Don Mattingly has given his club this season is their professionalism. Hernandez embodies that by putting his best interest to the side. “Thinking of it as a team and where I can get the most out of my career, it’d probably be at second base, but I have no problem playing everywhere,” he said.

“I feel comfortable everywhere.” Hernandez is largely expected to be the Dodgers’ starting center fielder in their National League Division Series matchup with the New York Mets.

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