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Dave Roberts Says Emphatically The Dodgers Will Continue With Platoon Lineups

After setting a big league record with eight home runs on Opening Day, Dave Roberts met some skepticism for changing the lineup drastically for Friday evening’s game. However, Roberts stands by the decision and says that everyone needs to get used to it. Furthermore, it sounds as if the platoon and player shuffle we have become accustomed to will continue.

Roberts told Bill Plunkett of the OC Register that the Dodgers won’t deviate from their strategy.

“We are going to move guys around. Our guys have done it for three years and we’re going to do it again,” he said.

What this means – is that the Dodgers are likely to never have the same lineup twice. Always tinkering, and shuffling yacht furniture on the deck of the ship. Even if Joc Pederson homers a few times and is red hot – he might not necessarily play the next day. In fact, anyone seems to be fair-game for a day off. Moreover, there is no rhyme or reason to try and guess at what the Dodgers will do next with the lineup card.

“It’s part of having a plan,” he said. “Yeah, sometimes it can be hard not to deviate. I’m not saying I’m in a box. But it’s the second game of the season. You have to be able to stick to a plan for at least a couple games.”

Analysis

Personally, I don’t like the platoon lineups. They aren’t going away, so I need to get used to them. Still, I make the case that it ruins hot streaks, prolongs slumps, and you use all your toys up early. Then you’re using Hyun-Jin Ryu to pinch hit when a game goes into extra innings.

What are your thoughts on the use of platoon lineups? Do you mind them? Are you okay with the Dodgers employing this strategy?

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Written by Clint Evans

Clint lives in Ohio, and played collegiate baseball. He loves the Dodgers due to his first memories of Chavez Ravine when he was nine years old. The voice of Vin Scully has been a staple in his life since he was a kid. No amount of baseball talk is ever enough, and he wishes the regular season was year round. He has written about baseball online since 2007.

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    • They (Freidman and his puppet Roberts) are making their beds so to speak and eventually because of this platooning they will lie in it! I am so sickened by this I lost my appetite for any lunch!

      • I can understand platooning a couple guys, but I think overall it’s important to have 6 or 7 everyday guys. For instance I think Seager, Turner, Pollock, Bellinger, Muncy and possibly even Kike should all be everyday players. I also think Pederson should get more ABs than last year. Let him hit lefties. Verdugo is a great backup plan (for this year at least) but he shouldn’t be stealing starts from an impact bat like Joc Pederson.

  1. Sooner or later Roberts/management need to realize that baseball isn’t always black and white. There is a grey area and sometimes you have to Coach from your gut and throw out the analytics. You never walk away from a heater, which by platooning is what you do.

    • It’s a long season. They’ve already played a month. They had 4 months off after the WS. A MLB regular season is a grind. We need our guys to healthy and strong for 6 months. I support Doc.

  2. Platoons are good to a point. For instance old Fred Lynn. could not hit a southpaw even during his hottest streaks. That being said, though, play em when they are hot and sit them when they`re not.

      • And they very will could lose their third World Series in a row. In fact, I dreamed last night that they did, and I hadn’t even read this yet. People can talk about the “genius” in the front office. If they don’t learn from their mistakes, that isn’t “genius.”

  3. You can look at it two ways, removing a hot player can kill a hot steak but on the other hand you need to keep all players fresh and invested by giving them playing time

  4. I get that the dodgers have depth, but let’s not win the battle and loose the war again! The Dodger “best eight” are that for a reason, so let them play. Giving days off is a good way to keep the players fresh, but so is letting them play. I believe the platoon system will work as effectively as it did last year: win the division, win the national league and then loos the world series.

  5. I despise platooning when employed to the extremes by Roberts. There are always times when it can be useful, but to live by it constantly, you will surely die.

  6. Personally, I don’t like platooning. However the Dodgers I would consider platooning are Pederson because he looks lost against LHP, but the replacement for him is Taylor and so far, not good even though his previous hitting coach Scoyoc(sp?) is now with the team and Muncy depending on much he regresses with Freese. Some might say Pederson is on fire right now(w/3hrs), albeit all against RHP. Some would say give Pederson a chance against LHP, but further down the line-up(not lead-off), say 6th-7th.

    • Let Peterson ride it out, saying he can’t hit left handed pitching by not playing him against lefties is a self fulfilling prophecy. Give him a chance (more than a small sample size), he may just surprise all of us like. Cody Bellinger and Cory Seager has done.

  7. Roberts was ripped pretty good yesterday by two of the talking heads on MLB. The point was that Joc is so hot that it is necessary to play him every day and see what he can do. I agree with this and if it doesn’t work platoon him with Verdugo. I would use Taylor to back up Kike, that’s all.

  8. Platooning is a bad strategy I believe. I’m not sure it gets the team where you want to go in the end…which is the winning the World Series. One thing is does do however is keep the players in line by keeping their stats lower than they might ordinarily be if playing more regularly. I see it as a benefit for the corporate whole, who may not have to dole out the big salaries for “high producing, high stat players”. IMO.

  9. Sitting Barnes and Pederson after their brilliant opening day was counterintuitive and counterproductive. Roberts needs to foster, not impede production.

  10. I knew they were full of it. You think you’re hot shit wait until you face better teams. Your platoons will bite you in the ass and again in October, jackasses

  11. Ruin hot streaks keep cold streaks going longer. Players lose rhythm and use up your pinch hitters quicker for long games like on Friday. Cant keep soing the same thing and expect different results.

  12. I am not a fan of platooning as many of you believe with your comments. I see platooning the same as the lefty/righty pitching matchups. Starters go 5-7 innings against both lefty and righty batters. Then managers continually want lefty/righty matchups with relievers. Statistics show that a high percentage of relievers walk the first batter anyway. There goes your matchup. If a batter can’t hit the opposite side then maybe its time to revisit Triple A.

    Not sure what Taryn Miller is alluding to with “erase the deficiency”?

    • Well that is the problem, in part because of this act of total platooning stupidness it’s no wonder at all in my mind why we have a team full of marginal players who are only able to compete against one hand of a pitcher!

    • Uh she was right on. The deficiency is the lack of full time players. You dont platoon good players. You platoon marginal players or one handed players. A few teams platoon 1 or 2 players. We platoon 5 or 6 because they are not good enough. Dont confuse that with “depth”.

      • Spot on, Gordon60, I could not agree with you more if I tried! In fact you or somebody should pass this info to Roberts and the puppet master upstairs . Bottom line:
        YOU DO NOT PLATOON GOOD PLAYERS!!!!!!!!!

  13. Clint, do you and others here want to know my real thoughts about this? Both Roberts and Freidman are downright liars! In fact they in some way broke one of the 10 Commandments IMHO. This is so wrong it’s not funny and I honestly hope it blows up in both Roberts and Freidman’s faces! And guess what folks…. forget even getting to the WS this year and it might be just as well because I can GUARANTEE you all that the AL team representing will be there having a solid lineup NOT full of players made marginal ones via platooning. If I am a regular on this team, having heard him say that I want out !!!!!!!!!

  14. Platooning is a bad strategy I believe. I’m not sure it gets the team where you want to go in the end…which is the winning the World Series. One thing is does do however is keep the players in line by keeping their stats lower than they might ordinarily be if playing more regularly. I see it as a benefit for the corporate whole, who may not have to dole out the big salaries for “high producing, high stat players”. IMO.

  15. I’m just disgusted. And now sitting down Turner after he gets on track with 5H & 5RBIs. Sounds like Friedman’s ego and his press secretary are putting baseball second.

    • John, what’s the use anymore, I mean I am sickened as well but they sure as heck don’t care one bit about those who pay his and the player’s salary (us) feel about or say about this.

  16. Clint, you are so correct on what ya said here, I agree 1,000% !
    Personally, I don’t like the platoon lineups. They aren’t going away, so I need to get used to them. Still, I make the case that it ruins hot streaks, prolongs slumps, and you use all your toys up early. Then you’re using Hyun-Jin Ryu to pinch hit when a game goes into extra innings.
    And I am sure you as well as everyone here who watched games last year saw how Roberts used up his bench guys by the 7th inning or so, putting the team at a disadvantage by having to use a pitcher to PH.

  17. I’m not a fan of platooning, but y’all bust me up. 3 games in and you’d think we were discussing nationalized health care or the electoral college. Take a chill pill and relax, it’s baseball: a game where failure 7 out of 10 attempts will most likely get you in the HOF.

    GO BLUE!

    • Ya don’t sit the hot hands. And we saw how eventually Dodgers were no match for Boston in the WS where it counted the most. I am just having a bit of difficulty with this platooning only after both Freidman and Roberts had indicated that they would not need to do as much. An occasional day off with the long schedule is understandable, but not to go to extremes with a change of lineups every single day.

  18. Brilliant, just brilliant! Barnes sits after having a great start to the year and Muncy, who is BEYOND a defensive liability is playing 3rd , where he has shown to be horrific. Amazing, but at least put a better defender at 3rd for crying out loud if Turner is not in lineup. How stupid are Freidman and his puppet can they be????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Calm down fellas. Hey, the stats show that on balance our righties hit lefties better and visa versa. So I fully expect and hope that Dave platoons Joc and Muncey and to a lesser extent Cody.. But Turner and Seager have nearly equal success vs. lefties and righties, and other than using rest days to deal with both coming off injury years, I expect them both to play regularly.
    As for Boston? Last year they were a better hitting team all year long than the Dodgers. This year they revert to the mean.

    • Bill, Boston was the better hitting team because those players were allowed to be by getting consistent AB’s, not being in and out of lineups daily, not having to play everywhere and at different positions on the field or in the batting order daily. End of story!

      • PaulDodgerFan1965. After watching Monday night’s game, how many games will be lost because the “JV-squad” starts because the opposing team starts a LHP? I will be watching tonight’s game against SF, Bumgarner scheduled to start and I’m sure “bumgarner-killer” Kike Hernandez will bat lead-off. Personally I’m expecting a homerun from Kike. I will be disappointed if he doesn’t hit a homerun. Pederson won’t start for 3-games unless the Dodgers get the LHP out of the game and then Roberts will use-up all hitters with his “platooning.”

  20. I would be 100% for platooning a manager……..this way when he screws up he can get benched and maybe try to manage every three of four days…….then they’ll realize that he is not needed because he can’t win games with his ability to manage

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