Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers entered Spring Training with most of their position players locked into specific roles and few questions left to answer.
However, Gavin Lux suffering an ACL tear in his right knee that will likely cause him to miss the entire 2023 season has caused the Dodgers’ plans to change.
Miguel Rojas is moving from a utility role to the starting shortstop, while Chris Taylor will see much more time in the infield, rather than primarily in the outfield.
“I think coming into camp, we felt really good about our position player group,” Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said at Camelback Ranch.
“Felt like for the most part it was fairly well locked down with good depth behind it. And now we feel less good about it.”
Friedman added the Dodgers will look into acquisitions they could make and believes any of those would come from the trade route rather than the free agency, but he doesn’t necessarily expect anything to take place during Spring Training.
“We’ll definitely spend a lot more time talking about the various profiles that could fit,” Friedman said. “Because the more that fit, increase the chances of being able to figure something out. Spring Training typically isn’t the best time for those types of moves, but we’ll have conversations and see what is possible and what’s not.”
What time of player the Dodgers would target is still being discussed among the front office, but it would likely be someone who presents more offensive upside than Rojas rather than adding another defense-first option.
“We felt like coming into Spring Training, this was an offensive unit that was going to score a lot of runs,” Friedman said. “Now obviously it’s less than what we thought a week ago. We still feel like it’s a very high-end offense, but to the extent we can add to it, we’d love to and we’ll always be on the lookout for that.”
Andrew Friedman: Dodgers can compete for 2023 World Series
Despite the Lux injury and drop off in roster depth, Friedman still sees the Dodgers as a talented team that can compete for a World Series and expressed confidence in Rojas, who he called one of the most talented defenders in baseball.
“I feel like we’re definitely a team that is talented and deep enough to compete for a championship,” Friedman said. “Obviously, the Lux injury hurts us in multiple ways. But still feel like we have the talent and depth here to do that. And a whole season to learn more and provide opportunities to different guys, as well as the trade deadline.
“So we feel like we have the talent in house to put us in a really good position, going into July, and then assess that market. And then hopefully put ourselves in the best position to go out and win a World Series.”
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