Dodgers depth chart: 1 player moving up, 1 moving down, and 1 in the middle
By Drew Koch
Dodgers depth chart: J.D. Martinez showing progress
J.D. Martinez was the Los Angeles Dodgers replacement for the departed Justin Turner. Ironically, Turner signed with Martinez's former team, the Boston Red Sox.
Unfortunately, Martinez has not yet lived up to the billing often, save for one red-hot game on Tuesday night.
Turner has recently boosted his slash line to .277/.385/.385, but Martinez is not having the same consistent impact on his new ball club. A 4-for-5 night on Tuesday with a pair of homers inflated his season stats (small sample size!), but his on-base percentage still lingers around .300. That's not what you'd expect from your designated hitter.
Martinez is just that as well - purely a DH. Sure, in a pinch, Dave Roberts could throw Martinez into the outfield, but the slugger spent all last season as the Red Sox designated hitter, and with the talent in LA's outfield, you have to assume that's the plan for Martinez in 2023.
Obviously Martinez's $10 million salary dictates that he still plays, and on a regular basis at that. But maybe when a southpaw is on the bump, it's time for J.D. Martinez to take a seat. The 35-year-old is hitting just .105 off lefties this season, quite the shift from his career batting average of .305 against left-handed pitchers.
If Martinez can put a few more consistent games together that resemble his Tuesday showcase (which he followed up with an RBI double...), he might get the up arrow. But one game isn't enough to change his trajectory just yet.