Much was made of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ decision to trade Dee Gordon in the offseason. The fleet-footed second baseman was coming of an All-Star season and led the Majors in stolen bases while serving as a catalyst atop the lineup.
However perhaps more importantly, trading Gordon left the Dodgers without a clearcut option to replace him. As it turned out, that concern was quickly addressed when the Dodgers acquired Howie Kendrick from their Southern California counterparts.
Kendrick’s play has quickly endeared him with fans who were upset over Gordon being shipped to Miami. Batting behind Adrian Gonzalez, Kendrick has not only protected the Dodgers’ cleanup hitter, but also added to Gonzalez’s production with a hot bat of his own — forming quite the duo in the heart of the lineup.
While Kendrick’s first experience in the Dodgers rivalry with the San Francisco Giants was less than stellar as the Boys in Blue were swept in the three-game series, the 31-year-old second baseman made a crucial play in the eighth inning on Sunday.
With Joel Peralta mired in a bases-loaded jam and the Dodgers clinging to a 2-1 lead, Kendrick laid out to make a diving catch that ended the inning. Unfortunately his effort would only prolong the inevitable as the Giants won on a walk-off single in the 10th inning.