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Dodgers Playoff Roster: What’s it Look like without Alex Verdugo?

Verdugo provides a great plate approach that is needed

With the news that Alex Verdugo had a setback in his rehabilitation assignment, thoughts immediately go towards the post-season lineups. With the offense, defense and spark that Verdugo provides, not having him in the post-season is a big setback. We’ll take a look at what the lineups would look like with and without Verdugo. The assumption is that the Dodgers will carry 13 position players like they’ve done the last few years.

With Verdugo

Against Righties

C – Will Smith/Russell Martin
1B – Max Muncy
2B – Chris Taylor/Kiké Hernandez
3B – Justin Turner
SS – Corey Seager
LF – Joc Pederson
CF – Cody Bellinger
RF – Verdugo

Other bench: David Freese, A.J. Pollock, Matt Beaty

As you can see I have left Gavin Lux off of the post-season roster but that could change based on his performance over the next three weeks. Another surprise might be A.J. Pollock sitting against right handed pitching.

However “facing right-handed pitchers Pollock has slashed .220/.290/.422/.713; against left-handed pitching .350/.398/.500/.898” (courtesy Think Blue LA). I can also envision Bellinger and Verdugo switching outfield positions. If you recall, the outfield defense was pretty strong with Bellinger and Verdugo together out there. The overall defense of this lineup is probably the best they can put on the field.

Against Lefties

C – Smith/Martin
1B – Freese
2B – Muncy
3B – Turner
SS – Seager
LF – Pollock
CF – Bellinger
RF – Verdugo/Taylor/Kiké

Other bench: Beaty, Pederson

Despite an slash line of .327/.358/.485 (AVG/OBP/SLG) it wouldn’t surprise me if the Dodgers find a way to platoon Verdugo. One sure thing is that David Freese will be in the lineup against lefties.

Without Verdugo

If Verdugo isn’t healthy enough then who would be his replacement on the roster? The candidates would include Lux, Jedd Gyorko, Kris Negrón or possibly Austin Barnes. For this article I’ll assume Gyorko will make enough of an impression to make the roster. They traded for him for a reason so we’ll see. Again, if Lux shows enough during the next few weeks he would make it but it is still not something I am counting on.

Against Righties

C – Smith/Martin
1B – Muncy
2B – Taylor/Kiké
3B – Turner
SS – Seager
LF – Pollock
CF – Bellinger
RF – Pederson

Other bench: Freese, Beaty, Gyorko

The outfield alignment is one we’ve seen recently. If Lux works his way onto the roster then he could start at 2B.

Against Lefties

C – Smith/Martin
1B – Freese
2B – Muncy
3B – Turner
SS – Seager
LF – Pollock
CF – Bellinger
RF – Taylor/Kiké

Other bench: Beaty, Gyorko, Pederson

There isn’t much difference with or without Verdugo if they platoon him against lefties. This defense is also the weakest with Freese and Muncy on the right side. From my perspective, the only above average fielder on the infield is Seager.

What Gets Lost Without Verdugo

From an offensive perspective Verdugo has slashed .294/.342/.475 this season and has a strikeout percent of 13% which follows Matt Beaty’s 12.1% in leading the team. The playoffs brings a regular flow of superior pitching than many of the regular season games and having players that can get the bat on the ball can be essential. He also has 13 defensive runs saved (DRS) despite losing a lot of time to injury.

 

The team also misses his extra spark and hustle. He works very hard at his craft but also brings an extra bit of fun to the team.

Final Thoughts

It would be a shame to not have Alex Verdugo in the post-season. However, I am still optimistic that he will be healthy and ready. He has been noticeably missed on the team as they seem to be striking out a bit more and we don’t have his frequent Instagram appearances on the Dodgers account. I think his approach at the plate is essential in the post-season

Written by Tim Rogers

A fan of the Dodgers since 1973 since I got my first baseball cards while living in Long Beach. I came to San Diego for college and never left nor did I ever switch my Dodgers' allegiance. Some know me as the "sweater guy". #ProspectHugger

8 Comments

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  1. If I recall right, those teams the Dodgers faced in the previous PS and WS did not have to ‘shuffle’ their lineups based upon the handedness of the opposing pitcher. And I still say that was one reason for Dodger’s downfall because of that platooning during the WS in much more frequency than the opposing teams

    • Right on target, AZUL!!!! In the long run, platooning has not really helped us. We need to get a set lineup over the next few weeks, not one that varies according to “the handedness” of the opposing pitcher. At present, I do not think we have the overall team strength, if you will, to win the WS. I am most concerned about starting pitching, and the lack of consistency of late in Kersh’s relinquishing of home runs, Buehler’s erratic performances, and HJR’s lack of stamina. The BP is a separate story unto itself!!!! Go Blue!!!

    • Robin, Dodgers however at this time are not sure about whether Verdugo would be healthy enough in time but WSS. if he was, I am sure he would be on the PS roster. In the case of Lux, it may boil down to a numbers crunch, as Dodgers can only have 25 guys and Kike. Taylor and Muncy have been here basically for the entire year from the start. Keep in mind that Dodgers still have some vulnerability against the good LHP, so it is why at least CT 3 and Hernandez would be on the roster. Plus we know the versatility of those guys are what Dodgers want.

      • PaulDodgerFan1965, I’m beginning to think Verdugo’s injury is more serious than the Dodgers are letting on and therefore have no choice but to leave
        Verdugo Off the playoff roster. Hernandez, I’ve Never been a fan of this clown, the so-called “Madison Bumgarner” killer. Both Bumgarner and Hernandez are living in the past. As for the versatility issue, that is more effective in a 162-game marathon but Not in a best-of-five or seven series. Whichever team gets hot, see the giants 3 World Series championships.

  2. I realize there is more to it than OPS, but looking at the splits, Freese should play against righties and lefties. Beaty hits righties even better than Verdugo. Pollock hits lefties better than Verdugo. Verdugo hits well and fields better, but there isn’t the hole there might have been if the Dodgers didn’t have such great depth.

  3. What the heck is goin’ on here??? Who’s Gyorko??? and why do I see his name listed? I’m debating whether I should get into another Barnes Fiasco, where Will Smith is Mis-Treated & Dis-Respected once again. I read something where it sounded like it was a “Seniority” call—what about TEAM-WORK e.g. what’s Best for the Team ? Send down Rios & Garlick and get Barnes because Postseason??? He had the worst BA last year in Postseason at 0.69, and don’t make excuses like his Defense- Will has no E’s Barnes managed to make 5 in 15 AAA Games and 6 while with LAD, and who threw out the Leagues #1 Base Stealer … sorry, but I don’t think a Slot can be wasted

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