Heading into the 2014 season, no position on the roster was more uncertain than second base. Two weeks in, however, it appears as if uncertainty has miraculously transformed into what might just be an over-stocked cupboard.
One month ago, there were three names circulating around the Dodgers’ second baseman job: Dee Gordon, Justin Turner and Alexander Guerrero.
Gordon was the guy everyone was rooting for — an exciting speedster who simply hadn’t proven he could hit or field at the professional level. Would a move to second really change everything? Would Dee’s last chance be successful?
Turner was the wild card — a guy who seemed to be the safest bet to make the roster as the best defensive option of the three. The 29-year-old Long Beach native had played in more than 95 games just once in his career (2011), but he is coming off a 2013 campaign in which he hit .280 on 200 at bats.
The final option was Guerrero — the cuban defector who was one of LA’s biggest off-season acquisitions this year. With a four-year, $28 million deal it seemed unlikely the power-hitting middle infielder would open the season in the minors, but with a handful of minor injuries plaguing him through the spring, that’s exactly what happened.
So now, here we are.
Gordon is hitting .405 in 10 games and he leads the majors with 9 steals. Sure, the defense has been shaky (he already has two errors), but his offense has more than made up for his defensive frustrations. But is it sustainable? (Gordon did hit .297 in AAA last season).
Then there’s Guerrero — the guy they’re paying $7 million to play in Albuquerque. While it’s only one game, the second baseman made his minor league debut on Sunday and, well, he impressed. In four at bats, Guerrero had three hits, including a double and a three-run homer that was ummm, large.
So what now?
As long as Gordon hits around .300, steals bases and can play at least tolerable defense (Guerrero isn’t projected to be a defensive whiz either), it’s hard to imagine a world where he loses his job. Along the same lines, Guerrero isn’t going to be called up to be a backup (much like Joc Pederson).
So do they trade one? Wait for someone to get hurt?
These are the questions that might start keeping Ned Colletti up at night if things keep going along the path they’re headed. Then again, I guess that isn’t such a bad problem to have.
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