2 Dodgers Who Won't Be Better in 2023
Max Muncy, INF
Max Muncy may epitomize the Dodgers' ability to find diamonds in the rough more than any other player. He was legitimately plucked off the A's scrap heap, and almost immediately found himself thrust into the 18th inning of Game 3 of the World Series, where he flicked an effortless opposite-field wall-scraper off Nathan Eovaldi to end a long day's journey into night.
Muncy's Dodgers career has likely already peaked, and that's alright. The highs were high, and the lows don't appear to be Cody Bellinger-level low.
After all, in a banged-up 2022 season compromised by an impact elbow injury suffered at the tail end of 2021 -- when he was the Dodgers' clear MVP -- he continued on his "power and patience" kick, but regressed in the average department. After full, 162-game seasons with xBAs of .257, .261 and .271, Muncy's expected number dropped all the way to .208 last season, in the bottom 4% of the league. He was still exceptionally patient (.329 OBP/.196 AVG) and moderately powerful (21 homers, down from 36 the year prior). He was a solid ballplayer at multiple infield positions after being a very great one the year prior.
Now 32, it's fair to expect Muncy to look more like his 2022 self moving forward and less like the reincarnation of Kevin Youkilis that he'd been at his peak. And that's perfectly alright.