During a much needed off day, I have time to continue to mourn Juan Uribe‘s jazz hands and try to find some shred of optimism in regards to the trade with Atlanta. Farhan Zaidi seemed to really like the four players the Dodgers acquired in exchange for Juan Uribe and Chris Withrow, but I’m still disappointed by the return despite Zaidi’s reasons he outlined on SportsNet LA before the game on Wednesday. If it wasn’t a slap in the face to see Uribe in an Atlanta uniform at Dodger Stadium, then Alberto Callaspo‘s No. 5 jersey would really twist the knife deeper into my heart.
The Dodgers have a big series at Busch Stadium beginning on Friday evening, and I’m concerned that the offense won’t rise to the occasion amongst the sea of Red. The Dodgers were already embarrassingly bad up in AT&T Park, and their road record isn’t pretty at 7-11. Let’s not forget that they will have to play a doubleheader in Colorado as well. Things could get ugly, and the Giants are breathing down their necks.
By now if the Dodgers second baseman was hitting an abysmal .203/.274/.617 with May coming to a close, I would be complaining immensely. Don’t get me wrong, Jimmy Rollins should not be batting second in the lineup. The problem is that Don Mattingly is too stubborn to make the change, but it really hasn’t annoyed me as much as you think it would.
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That’s probably because I know that Jimmy Rollins won’t be around forever. He’s just a temporary shortstop for the Dodgers, and I’m okay with that. Why aren’t I raging mad at Rollins every time he grounds out weakly? His name is Corey Seager.
Corey Seager went 6-for-6 with 6 RBI in Triple-A on Thursday. He’s 21, and he’s amazing. The top Dodger prospect is exceeding all my expectations after being promoted to Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Seager’s wild Wednesday included a homerun in the first inning, three singles and two doubles. Seager broke out offensively against the Salt Lake Bees, and he racked up 3 homeruns, 4 doubles, 10 RBI and 6 runs in the series.
Between his time with AA-Tulsa and AAA-Oklahoma City, Seager is hitting a combined .324/.365/.528 with 7 homeruns, 24 RBI, 11 walks and 26 strikeouts in 189 plate appearances.
Defensively, the Dodgers still see Seager as a shortstop, but he has also been getting some weekly playing time at third base in order to give the Dodgers some positional flexibility from their young infielder. He’s played 36 games at shortstop and 8 games at third base so far this season.
The series in Salt Lake City was historical not only for Seager’s performance, but it was the first time OKC won a series in SLC since 1999. Corey Seager was five years old.
While I projected Seager to be ready in early 2016 with a possible September call up this season, I’m beginning to feel as though Seagertember could prelude Joctober.
The Dodgers will not usurp Jimmy Rollins right now even though his offense has been very disappointing. Rollins still has provided shored up middle infield defense which was pretty horrendous last season with Hanley Ramirez. The other infield members including Adrian Gonzalez, Howie Kendrick, Justin Turner and Alex Guerrero have provided plenty of firepower in order to offset Rollins and his lack of offense. Corey Seager and Hector Olivera will be injected into the Dodger infield sooner rather than later, and they very well could make an impact on this team down the stretch this season.
Dodgers prospect Corey Seager smiles during morning workouts at Camelback Ranch. March 14, 2015. Photo: Stacie Wheeler
The second half of the 2015 intrigues me immensely. Brandon Beachy, Ross Stripling, Brandon League and Pedro Baez all should be healthy at some point and ready to contribute. The Dodgers still haven’t had the luxury of starting their best outfield in a game in a long time, and there is a starting pitcher out there…somwhere…for the Dodgers. (No, Eric Stults is not the answer). Corey Seager might just be a September call up which could help the Dodgers not only in the long-term but also in their season quest this year which is to clinch their third consecutive National League West title.
Of course Seager’s development is of the highest importance, and even if Seager does not get a late season call up, he will be an integral part of the Dodgers team for years to come. Seager is perhaps the single most exciting positional prospect the Dodgers have had in many years, and to think he’s probably even more talented than Joc Pederson makes me giddy.
While I have multiple concerns regarding the Dodgers themselves right now and the surging Giants, there is a lot yet to unfold this season. As we have seen from the new front office since their arrival this offseason, Friedman and Zaidi are constantly looking to mix-and-match in order to create a long-term success in Los Angeles. While I don’t necessarily agree with the way they are flipping players like hotcakes, I’m not in the business of human resources.
I’m very emotionally scarred from the Uribe trade, but if the outcome at the end of the season results in a World Championship, then I will get some solace out of the seemingly ice cold trade. The players are more than just commodities and numbers, and winning a World Championship has as much to do with unpredictable and unquantifiable magic as it does with what looks good on paper.
Even after the sad week I have had with the loss of a beloved Dodger, I’m staying positive as the Dodgers head out to St. Louis. I’m coping with a little help from Corey.