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Dodgers: Tim Locastro is the Lead-off Man of the Future, and He is Ready



When the Dodgers made a seemingly minor trade in July 2015, I do not think anyone paid any special attention to Tim Locastro. He came over from the Blue Jays along with Chase DeJong in exchange for international bonus pool slots. DeJong later went to Seattle in another minor trade in March of last year. While Locastro’s name was quickly forgotten, he is making a name for himself at the minor league level.

Locastro naturally profiles as an everyday lead-off man. At just over six feet tall, he might be a bit larger than your average leadoff type hitter. But the numbers are certainly there. Since being drafted in 13th round of the 2013 Amateur Draft, Locastro has stolen 144 bases. In 2017 alone, he slashed 308/383/454 en route to stealing 34 bases that season. Those sort of numbers at the major league level could prove vital to a Dodgers’ lineup looking for a jolt.

Think about the last time the Dodgers had a true leadoff man in their lineup. Los Angeles has not had a player break the 20 stolen base mark in a single season since Dee Gordon stole 64 back in 2014. In fact in 2016 the stolen base leader was Howie Kendrick. He only stole 10 bases. Not that stealing bases is vital to a team’s success, but it certainly helps at the top of the lineup.

Chris Taylor has done an excellent job at the top of the lineup for Los Angeles, as he is their temporary fix. But with his ability to drive the ball into the gaps and out of the park, Taylor fits better as a sixth or seventh hitter in this strong lineup. Especially given his 2017 OBP of 354 was the only season he has ever broken the 300 mark.

As of Monday, Tim Locastro is slashing 385-448-500 at AAA Oklahoma City. He has only played 8 games, but 10 hits in that span sure looks good. As it stands, Locastro has played Shortstop, Second base, Leftfield, and centerfield. He has the versatility of Kike Hernandez combined with the speed of Chris Taylor, making him a great call-up option.

Analysis

Perhaps you are one of the many calling for the inevitable promotion of Andrew Toles, and rightfully so. But do not look past Tim Locastro. He is going to be a huge part of this lineup someday soon. Perhaps even this season.

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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  1. This young mans services will be a great addition to this club, does a lot of things that add up to wins. Once he gets up and settled watch out!

  2. It is a true challenge for the Dodgers. Kemp is beginning to hit like the old Kemp and has another year left on his contract. A Turner Kemp powered line up would help us maintain some offensive ability. Puig has been very unlucky and will come around as will Seager and Taylor.
    When Forsythe is a free agent next year the Dodgers will not sign him and bring Taylor back to his original position at second. That opens up center for Locastro or Toles. As much as the FO and Robertson want to encourage Pederson I do not believe he is the answer to the Dodgers future outfield. An outfield of Verdugo, Locastro and Puig would be excellent and incredible defensively with some plus arms. With a great year the Dodgers would be able to either keep Kemp or trade him opening up two slots next year in the OF.

    • Very good analysis Tmax. Lots of potential and talent. The Dodgers are very fortunate to have the options and versatility they have. I too don’t believe Forsythe and Pederson have a future here, although I felt somewhat the same about Puig two years ago and now I’m glad they talked some sense into his head and decided to keep him around.

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