Despite a bit of a positive progress report over the weekend, things still aren’t looking great for the Dodgers and Joc Pederson 25 days away from opening day.
On Sunday, manager Dave Roberts had the following to say about the status of his outfielder.
If you’re looking at the progression as we sit here on Sunday, obviously next week isn’t going to be feasible. Sometime hopefully in the next couple weeks we’ll get him in there.
When you hear “next couple weeks,” you start to worry. For what it’s worth, Roberts was optimistic that it wouldn’t take long for the 27-year-old to get ready for opening day. The manager recently said that Joc would be able to get multiple at-bats in minor league games when he’s ready to swing.
Notably, Pederson did take swings in the cages on Friday…
Joc Pederson also took swings in the cage today for the first time since injuring his right hip/side.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) February 28, 2020
… but with Roberts’ statement on Sunday, there may be reason to believe that the veteran took a small step backwards with his effort. However, the manager quickly put that to rest.
Joc Pederson came out of yesterday’s workout feeling okay, Roberts said, adding he’s still not concerned about him being ready for Opening Day. We’re not trying to rush Joc.”
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) February 29, 2020
Importantly, MLB.com scribe Jake Rill notes that Pederson “upped his intensity to 80-percent effort on Sunday morning” when it comes to swings in the cage.
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With Joc out, the legend of Cody Thomas can continue to grow as the youngster gets more leash in the outfield. Additionally, it will afford the Dodgers more opportunity to see what more options like Luke Raley bring to the table.
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Things like this are why the club focuses so heavily on depth every season.