When Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Tuesday that shortstop Gavin Lux is out for the season with a torn ACL, he said recently reacquired Miguel Rojas would get the bulk of the starts at short with Chris Taylor also getting some time there. On Wednesday, Roberts talked to the media again and went into a little bit more detail about LA’s plans at shortstop.
Roberts was specifically asked how he sees the mix between Rojas and Taylor playing out, and he suggested it could be somewhat fluid.
“It’s gonna change, I’m sure, but I think, you know, 80/20, 75/25, something like that [with Rojas getting more] and then CT kind of peeling off to left and some third. So kind of like that, but as far as playing time, I see CT playing quite a bit, yeah.”
Roberts suggested that he’s been a little slow with the information out of respect for Lux when he was asked how much of his thought since Lux’s injury has been devoted to these decisions.
“A lot of it, a lot of it. You know, there’s an initial part of it is the sensitivity towards Gavin and making sure, you don’t want him to feel like we’re just moving on, you know. That’s not true. But you do got to move on.”
Taylor came up as a shortstop, and short is still the position he’s played the more than any other in his career, but left field is quickly catching up (916 career plate appearances at short, 841 in left), and if you combine all the outfield spots, his 1,578 PA are far more than at short. Perhaps even more relevant, of Taylor’s 916 PA at shortstop, only one came last year and only 142 in the last three years. He got some regular time at short in 2019 when Corey Seager went down with a hamstring strain, and he was LA’s primary shortstop in 2018 between Seager’s season-ending elbow injury in late April and when the team acquired Manny Machado in July.
So Taylor will need to reacquaint himself with the position, but he’s played there so much in his career it shouldn’t be too much of a challenge. It will just take time and reps, and that’s what spring training is for.
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