The All-Decade Offense- The Outfield
It’d be hard to talk about the Dodgers last decade without bringing up a few big seasons from a group of young outfielders. Here’s my three starting outfielders for the decade.
Matt Kemp– The obvious choice, Kemp had the greatest single season of any Dodger hitter in 2011, when he notoriously should have won the NL MVP award if not for the roid-aided season of Ryan Braun. Kemp’s 39 home runs and 40 steals complemented a .324 average and 8.3 WAR season overall. He’ll forever be a fan-favorite, even in the minds of recent fans who saw him launch a home run in the World Series in 2018 against the Red Sox.
Yasiel Puig– In over 700 games with the Dodgers, Puig went from being an unknown from Cuba, to a Spring Training phenom, to finishing second in NL Rookie of the Year voting in 2013. He hit important playoff home runs, including the all-time greatest moment of my Dodger playoff fandom, when he hit a three-run home run in the 2018 World Series in Game Four off of Eduardo Rodriguez. Puig’s cannon arm and bat-licking antics will forever remind me of the best reasons to enjoy baseball: because it brings you back to your own childhood. He’s one of my favorite Dodgers, despite the drama he brought to the clubhouse.
Cody Bellinger– His 2019 postseason still stings, but his Rookie of the Year campaign subdues my frustration when considering his overall skills and performance during the decade. By WAR, he put up the second-best Dodger season with the bat, after Kemp’s 2011, and like Kemp, Belli-Bomb will probably finish second in the NL MVP voting. While he may have less of a long-standing relationship to Dodger fans than contemporary Andre Ethier, he literally is just as beloved, as the fans who ran on the field to hug him would tell you.
Andre Ethier (the most games as a Dodger during the decade) and Joc Pederson
Now, onto the infield.