Do ya’ll feel that? That bizarre feeling in the depths of your stomach? It kind of feels like the ultimate battle is taking place between hopeless ambition and general agitation? That means the postseason is upon us. That also means some difficult roster decisions must be made for these 2017 Dodgers.
One can thank the depth for the extra difficulty in making these decisions. Regular names like Pedro Baez, Ross Stripling or Hyun Jin Ryu could very well disappear from the roster shortly. Battles between names on the Dodgers’ roster must begin before the Dodgers square off against their eventual first-round opponent. Who we just found out last night will be the Diamondbacks.
One such battle figures to be speed vendor Tim Locastro, fresh off his first recently stolen bag, pitted against 3rd string catcher Kyle Farmer for the last spot on the bench. The hardworking Locastro splits time between playing for the Dodgers and working for his father’s paving business.
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When asked if his son was a good worker, Tim Locastro Sr. replied, “If he weren’t, I’d get rid of him.” Locastro produced a .308 average alongside 34 stolen bags as a minor leaguer this season and figures to be a valuable asset moving forward.
If you’re asking me, however, I’d say that 27-year-old Kyle Farmer has the upper hand when it comes to taking the final roster spot in this postseason. How can we forget about his dramatic walk-off debut? He also has fared decently with the stick overall, hitting .300 in limited time this year. Although Farmer doesn’t have tons of experience, he has more than Locastro. He also had just a bit less than Barnes did when he surprisingly made the postseason roster last year.
That leads to one of Farmer’s best abilities: allowing Austin Barnes to play more. I see you Austin Barnes fans out there. Why not with his .408 OBP or his .895 OPS? He could also get Grandal and his .668 OPS out of the lineup against lefties (maybe not when Kershaw pitches). Austin always crushes lefties (.886 OPS) and even does better against right-handed pitching. (900 OPS) Barnes is always a reliable AB off the bench and can certainly handle himself at second as well.
Or perhaps the front office surprises us (as they have a penchant for), and neither Locastro or Farmer makes the roster. The postseason possibilities are endless. It’s exciting, terrifying even. It makes me queasy just thinking about it. Well, that’s postseason baseball.