It’s hard enough to make the transition to a new team, but it’s even harder when you’re also competing for a roster spot on that new team.
Outfielder Chris Heisey was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers this winter in a somewhat strange move because of the team’s abundance of outfielders. The former Cincinnati Red is one of a handful of outfielders that is working to make the Opening Day roster. Heisey has struggled this spring, hitting just .081 in 220 games.
Despite those numbers, Heisey is still optimistic about his place with the Dodgers via JP Hoornstra of the Daily News:
I’d obviously love to be playing a lot better than I am now,” Heisey said, “but I am thankful that it is spring training, and this is the time we do get to work on some things. Being with a new organization, I would’ve liked to have a spring like I had last year. It just hasn’t happened for me.”
Heisey has never been a hitter with a high average, topping out at .265 in 2012, but he has made the adjustment to coming off the bench and is considered a pinch-hitting threat.
Because of his past success and understanding in the role, manager Don Mattingly is not holding Heisey’s spring against him:
Early on I felt like Chris was trying really hard,” Mattingly said. “You always try to keep your perspective with guys that come from different organizations and you’ve never really seen before on a daily basis.”
Barring a trade, it appears Heisey will start the year in Triple-A because there are simply too many outfielders for just four or five spots. Since Heisey is one of the only outfielders with an option left, that leaves him in the Minors to begin the year.
Dodgers 2015 Spring Training – Chris Heisey