The Georgia-born Matt Beaty played an unexpected part for the 2019 record-setting Dodgers. After making his MLB debut on April 30th (and getting a base hit), the 26-year-old posted an on-base-plus-slugging of .834 through August. In that time he saw a lot of action in left field, filling in for the injured AJ Pollock.
By September, Beaty faded a bit and batting under .200 for the final month of the season. Still, he made the postseason roster and collected 3 hits in 8 at-bats.
Now, he finds himself fighting for a roster spot on an overloaded Dodgers team.
— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) February 22, 2020
In an effort to best set himself up for success, the utility man arrived to Glendale, Arizona early — about two weeks early. But he still understands that there’s a lot of work ahead of him.
“I still gotta prove that I belong at the big league level,” Beaty said while discussing the differences between this camp and last year’s camp. Importantly, he ended his chat with Alanna Rizzo by stating his overarching goal for 2020.
Just as long as I can crack the lineup or get a chance or an opportunity, that’s all I’m asking for.
Unfortunately for Matt, it might be a tall ask.
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Over the offseason, the Dodgers added superstar Mookie Betts to an already talented roster. Then a trade involving Joc Pederson fell through. Despite the newly amended 26-man active roster rule for the 2020 season, veterans like Enrique Hernandez, Chris Taylor, and AJ Pollock all are set to see regular time in the lineup for Los Angeles.
So the starting 9 for the club appears to be set, barring injury. The backups appear set, for the most part. While there’s a lot of spring training left, Dave Roberts identifying Beaty as a guy that has “earned it and needs to continue earning it” gives some hope to the left-handed batter.