While the Los Angeles Dodgers can take solace in the fact that they have one of the most complete teams in the game, one player that hasn’t been able to really cut it at the pro level just yet has been former top prospect Gavin Lux, who now faces some extreme competition for his old starting spot in the infield.
With Corey Seager continuing to rake and the addition of one of the best offensive infielders in baseball in Trea Turner, Lux may find it difficult to stick in the infield, especially when he’s hitting just .220 with six home runs and a 75 OPS+ on the season.
Lux returned to the majors during last night’s win against the San Diego Padres, and the win brought with it a peculiarly lineup.
Lux was batting seventh and playing left field, as the Dodgers looked to give Cody Bellinger a day off amid some serious struggles at the plate this season.
Is that what the future holds for Lux? Should the Dodgers continue to make him either a straight-up outfielder or a Chris Taylor-esque utility player that lines up everywhere?
If LA wants to keep both Turner and Seager without getting rid of Lux, they may not have much of a choice.
Can Gavin Lux be a solid outfielder for the Dodgers?
Lux was a shortstop as a prospect, but with the current infield logjam, LA is trying to move him all over the diamond. Lux has seen time at third base in the minor leagues, and this latest move hints that they are trying to make him the de facto successor to Taylor in the future.
Bellinger doesn’t have a hit in the month of September, so if Lux is able to provide a little bit of a spark while Bellinger tries to figure out exactly what the heck is going wrong, that’s something worth trying out.
Naturally, a good deal of Lux’s success in the outfield will hinge on his own ability to make something happen at the plate. It doesn’t necessarily matter where he lines up, as his defense was never the big issue. If Lux keeps struggling to drive the ball, the Dodgers might finally decide to part with the former top prospect.
Turner has played too well for LA to let him hit the open market in the immediate future, so bringing back both him and Seager should take the top spot on the offseason priority list given the war chest of funds LA has to make this happen.
Lux has a pivotal few weeks ahead of them, as he can prove he is worth gambling on in the outfield.