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Dodgers: Friedman Discusses Turner and Pollock’s Defensive Expectations

The Dodgers are hoping to get better defense from Turner and Pollock.

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LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 17: A.J. Pollock #11 of the Los Angeles Dodgers runs down a long fly ball as Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers backs him up in the fourth inning at Dodger Stadium on September 17, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)

The Dodgers had one of the best defenses in all of baseball last season in terms of defensive runs saved. However, two key pieces were not as great as the rest of the team. Those players were third baseman Justin Turner and outfielder AJ Pollock.

In Turner’s case, his defensive downturn can easily be contributed to age and because of it, the Dodgers are considering a positional change for him to first base. Similarly to Turner, the Dodgers made a positional change for AJ Pollock, moving him from center field to left field — it worked well.

Justin Turner

According to the president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman, the downturn of Justin Turner’s defensive output is ‘an aberration’. He reportedly is expecting a bounce-back year for Turner defensively, wherever his spot may be. With the Dodgers taking a hard look at free-agent third baseman Anthony Rendon, that could mean a positional move from the hot corner over to first base.

Turner finished the season with -7 defensive runs saved — a subpar mark — especially when comparing it to his positive output in the category in the preceding five seasons.

AJ Pollock

Andrew Friedman also extended the same verbiage regarding Justin Turner to last season’s acquisition AJ Pollock. Friedman believes that Pollock will be a lot better defensively, but in what spot in the outfield remains to be seen. Supposedly, Pollock has been working on improved flexibility to increase his range. The Dodgers already have two Gold Glove caliber center fielders in Alex Verdugo and Cody Bellinger, so Pollock likely will be relegated to left field.

Pollock in center field was worth -9 defensive runs saved, which is a pretty awful mark. In left field, however, he fared much better with just a -1 defensive runs saved mark.

Dodgers’ Defensive Outlook

Heading into 2020, we have no idea what the final complexion of the Dodgers’ roster will be, but according to Andrew Friedman, you can expect improvements from both Justin Turner and AJ Pollock out in the field.

Written by Daniel Preciado

My name is Daniel Preciado and I am 18 years old. I am a sophomore Sport Analytics major and Cognitive Science and Economics dual minor at Syracuse University. When I am not in New York, I live in Whittier, California --- not too far from Chavez Ravine. I am pretty old-school for being an analytics guy and I will always embrace debate. Also, Chase Utley did absolutely nothing wrong.

12 Comments

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  1. Turner to 1st,lux to short,Seager to third,Muncy to second,dump pollock and take the loss cause nobody will trade for him not even the dumb Padres .trade kike and strippling for a good reliever sign Vader to help kenley.

  2. I spend all day retweeting propaganda and falling for paid token black republicans on YouTube. I live alone way out in the country on a ranch my wife left me because I’m a toxic know nothing know it all. I think I’m raising my adult daughter in my image but she’s only humoring me

      • Alot of people don’t seem to realize that Turner has been a well above average defensive third baseman until the past couple years. But Turner himself has said go ahead and move me to first. Hey, we need defensive skills at first too, right? He’ll stay healthier over there and could quite possibly be above average defensively at first. He is about the only consistent right handed power and average hitter the Dodgers have. As demonstrated last year, his launch angle combined with the new juiced ball are a match made in heaven.

        Pollock has been the poster child for hard work, but unrealized potential due to injuries his entire career. He’s definitely got the tools, but the results (especially in NLDS) have been underwhelming. I agree with a flexibility program, but mostly as an injury preventive. I still wonder what this guy could do if he stayed healthy all year, whether with the Dodgers or someone else.

    • Maybe you should seek counseling.Just drive up to Area 51, knock on the door. The Governor of California wants you . Seriously Steve?What’s this have to do with the Dodgers?

  3. Freidman discusses this defensive issue concerning Turner and Pollock because honestly there is still a good chance then, that Turner stays at 3rd and Pollock goes to LF and platoons with Joc if Joc is not dealt.

  4. Deal Joc, deal Seager, deal Barnes. I’d give Turner one more year at the hot corner to turn his numbers around. I’d be okay with Turner, Lux, Muncy and Beaty as the infield and Pollack, Verdugo and Bellinger in the OF. But for God’s sake, get some damn relief help. Use the 2014 Royals bullpen as a blueprint. In the playoffs you want the opponent to have only 6 innings to get a lead or they’re dead.

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