Baez is a lot like Contreras and has been clutch against Los Angeles throughout his career. He is also one of the emotional leaders of the team and really knows how to get the team going late in games. Baez did not have a hit in the Division Series this year but continue to play his usual excellent defense throughout. Last year, he hit over .270 in the teams’ playoff run that resulted in a championship.
Over the 2017 season, Baez matched his 2016 output with a .273 batting average while hitting nine more home runs. The power may be worrisome, but his success against Los Angeles pitching is even more frightening. Baez has a lifetime .333 average against Kershaw, who will obviously be crucial to the Dodgers’ success.
If they want to win this series, they will need to neutralize Baez early on. Keeping the ball out of his general direction might also be for the best in this series.