Whatever you do, do not tell Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts that there is a platoon taking place in center field between Joc Pederson and Trayce Thompson. As it stands, the two young outfielders are doing their best to earn playing time on a consistent basis, but Roberts says there is definitely not a platoon happening in center field.
So far this season, Pederson has an .891 OPS in 69 plate appearances. Since April 17, though, Pederson has a 1.085 OPS in 33 plate appearances. He also has a .464 wOBA and 190 wRC+, as well as a 24.2 percent walk rate. In other words, Pederson has been awesome over the last little while. As such, Roberts is always going to defend him as the main guy.
“There are reasons you put guys in position to have success,” Roberts said. “There’s no platoon. I really don’t see it. You’re going to see Joc playing center field against (Tampa Bay’s) Matt Moore. And if it were a strict platoon, then I would have [not played] him.”
The interesting thing to note here is that the Dodgers don’t play Tampa Bay until May 3. That means Dave Roberts is looking ahead by almost a full week. So, he has a plan already in place this far out and that’s pretty notable. The other interesting thing is that it sounds like Pederson will be playing against left-hander Matt Moore.
On the season, Pederson is 0-for-5 with one walk against left-handers. However, oddly enough, left-handed batters have an .802 OPS against Moore this season. So this creates an interesting dynamic. Either way, Pederson deserves the bulk of the time in center field regardless of the matchup. He is the better player. And, if you listen to Roberts, there is definitely not a platoon.