Another day, another injury update on an impactful Dodgers player. Manager Dave Roberts seemed optimistic regarding outfielder AJ Pollock’s recovery from the hamstring injury he suffered on September 4th.
The next step? Simulated at-bats and a trip to Camelback Ranch.
“He’s going to take simulated at-bats over the weekend here in Los Angeles. Then, on Monday, he’ll head out to CBR (Camelback Ranch) and he’ll get into some games over there. From that point on, we’ll just where it goes to next.”
Roberts wasn’t pressed for a hard return date on Pollock, but next week certainly pencils out. Perhaps a return to his ‘ol stomping grounds next Friday when the Dodgers start a three-game series in Arizona?
Before his injury, Pollock had been nothing short of exceptional in the second half of the season. He was slashing .329/.379/.497 post All-Star break and produced an absurd 1.121 OPS in the month of July. Pollock was no slouch in 2020, but this year was shaping up to be his finest in Dodger blue.
Of course, one can’t mention Pollock’s injury without the corresponding increase in playing time for Cody Bellinger. Bellinger is by far the superior defender, but his .159 average is well below the fabled Mendoza Line.
Pollock’s return would allow the Dodgers to leverage one of their strengths – effective platooning. Pollock, unlike Bellinger, can hit left-handed pitching and provide adequate defense. In turn, the Dodgers can be much more selective with when they play Bellinger against righties.
The Dodgers need all hands on deck if they’re going to chase down the San Francisco Giants in the NL West.
Entering Wednesday, the Dodgers are two and a half games back.
Pollock’s return could provide a crucial boost to the Dodgers’ divisional title hopes.