Dodgers: Disappointments and Surprises 3 Weeks Into the Year
Adrian Gonzalez’s Confusing Year:
Since his arrival to LA in 2012, Gonzo has been a staple of this team and was always the “butter and eggs man”. In 2016, Gonzalez had arguably his worst season as a big leaguer; it got to the point where he was relegated to the fifth spot in the lineup (which isn’t bad) for multiple games. Anytime you can get a player “on the decline” who is coming off a “down” season that saw him hit .275, 18 home runs, and drive in 90 runs, you are in a good position.
It was almost a forgone conclusion that Adrian Gonzalez was declining and was going to struggle this year. Father Time is starting to catch up with the 34-year-old, and Father Time is undefeated.
Even with all the data telling us the obvious, no one could have guessed that his start to the season would be this puzzling. I use the word puzzling because Gonzalez hasn’t been terrible, but he has been far from great. He was able to push his struggling slugging percentage above .300 at Chase Field on Sunday and pushed his WAR to a whopping -0.2.
Gonzalez may not be the guy he used to be at the plate, but my main concern with him is durability. Since the WBC, he has been dealing with tendinitis in his forearm and it concerns me how long he will be able to withstand the pain. Coming into the season I was expecting Dave Roberts to spell Gonzo’s starts and limit him to only three to four games in any given week.
I didn’t have high expectations coming into the year for Gonzo, so it will be very hard to disappoint me further. However, I am secretly ready for a bright young talent to take over the reigns.