Love is in the air, and I’m not talking about Valentine’s Day. Time to hang up those Dodger posters you tore off the walls after game seven because baseball is back! Somewhat surprisingly, the Dodger I’m most excited to see is Logan Forsythe. Don’t worry, I wrote this article with my fingers crossed, so the jinx is off.
Logan Forsythe was brought in last year to hold down the everyday second base job and be the main leadoff man for the Dodgers. That didn’t go very well. Last year was an injury-plagued and just plain disappointing season for Forsythe. After a short-lived hot start, a toe injury and various ailments would hinder him for much of his regular season.
When he got back on the field, Forsythe struggled to consistently produce offensively. Gone were the various offense-happy AL East ballparks in which he played in for much of his career. After hitting 20 homers in the year prior with the Rays, Forsythe produced just six homers, had just a .327 slugging percentage, and hit .224 for the Dodgers.
Forsythe was brought in to help against left-handed pitching, which he did. Logan put together an impressive .870 OPS against southpaws in 2017. However, he was anemic against righties for nearly the entire season. Last year, against right-handed pitching, Forsythe hit .190 with a .262 slugging percentage. As a result, the 38-year-old Chase Utley, who is likely to be resigned, received significantly more playing time against righties than expected.
So, after all that, can the Dodgers really expect Forsythe to be the man for the job in 2018? I would argue definitely. Contrary to last year, Forsythe will enter the 2018 season outside of the spotlight. After being acquired from the Rays in exchange for then top-prospect, Jose De Leon, Forsythe
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found himself at the center of attention, a spot that does not fit his quiet and reserved personality.
He’ll have a fresh start to put the pesky injuries behind him, with another chance to be LA’s everyday second baseman. As a result, he will have ample opportunity to again show off his defensive prowess. There is no doubt Logan Forsythe is the best defensive second basemen LA
has and he plays well almost anywhere in the infield. Chase Utley could be back eventually, so Forsythe probably won’t get overexposed if he begins to struggle against righties.
“Logie Bear” is the type of player any manager would love. He’s a smart, team-oriented, grinder, who makes all the little plays a team hopes to see come the postseason. In fact, he was arguably the Dodgers’ most consistent postseason performer from start to finish, as he tallied a .435 OBP and hit .297 in October. He also has had ample time to readjust to his NL West surroundings after beginning his career with the Padres. And, let’s not forget how players miraculously produce fantastic seasons in their contract year, which is the case for the 31-year-old second baseman.
His major struggles against righties last year were somewhat surprising, as in 2016 he produced a .778 OPS against them. According to Andy McCullough, team officials believe that he will fare much better against them in 2018. Perhaps that’s why the team refused to dump Logan and his salary in an effort to resign Yu Darvish, who will give Dodger fans yet another reason to boo him and the Cubs. The Dodgers believe in Logan Forsythe. I believe in Logan Forsythe. So should you.