Dodgers Playoff Roster: To Dre Or Not To Dre
Less than 22 hours until first pitch of their NL Division Series against the Atlanta Braves, the Dodgers still haven't released their NLDS roster. Everyone knows what's holding up the finalizing of the roster: Andre Ethier.
"We pretty much feel like we have our roster," manager Don Mattingly told reporters Wednesday afternoon at Turner Field. "We just haven't announced it."
Ethier was at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday to workout with the team after spending the weekend at the Dodgers training complex in Glendale, Ariz. "I had three days of having 10, 12 at-bats against some guys there and just try to stay active," Ethier said.
Ethier did not run on Tuesday and according to reports did not run at Turner Field on Wednesday either. Regardless Ethier settled the issue on Tuesday. "It's a hitting role right now and maybe more as the series progresses," he said.
Meaning, Ethier at best will only be used as a pinch hitter come Game 1. So if Ethier can be used as a pinch hitter, what's the hold up?
"What we've been waiting on is basically to see if we're going to have to run for him because that changes the dynamic of how you use your players," Mattingly explained.
If Ethier is on the roster and he can't run, chances are good that Dee Gordon will also make the roster.
After starting the season dealing with injuries, they seemed to turn the corner in June which sparked their epic run in the middle of the season. But in September, the injury bug reared its ugly head again which accounted for their 12-15 record. Despite it Game 1 starter Clayton Kershaw said that there can be no time in feeling disappointed.
"I think for us it's just what we got is going to be good enough, and no excuses," Kershaw said. "They've been a big part of helping us get here, but we like the guys that we have in the lineup, and I don't think anybody is going to make any excuses after the series."
As the season came to an end, I documented some reasons why I thought the Dodgers would have problems in the postseason. Perhaps it was the lack of sleep that had me at my best.
Looking at the Braves this morning some alarming numbers jumped out. In the last 28 days B.J. Upton has been batting .028. Manager Fredi Gonzalez opted to leave of second baseman Dan Uggla off the roster for the first who was batting .125 in the same time span. The moral arbiter of baseball Brian McCann? .156. Sure the Braves have Freddie Freeman (.395) and Gerald Laird (.280), but no other batter has hit over .280 in that span.
As much as I question the Dodgers, I question the Braves just a bit more. While the Braves pitching staff is really good, I like the Dodgers just a little better.
I like the Dodgers to win in four games.