With the start of each MLB postseason comes national broadcasts and the revival of old talking points along with the start of new topics of discussion. This year the National League portion of the playoffs were exclusively handled by TBS.
Their studio coverage was anchored by host Casey Stern, and he was joined by analysts Pedro Martinez, Gary Sheffield and Jimmy Rollins. Coincidentally, each spent time with the Dodgers organization during their respective careers.
With Martinez now having watched the Dodgers as an analyst, he’s taken to referring to Justin Turner as ‘Mini Sheff’ in an ode to Sheffield. Martinez drew the parallel because of Turner’s success at the plate.
During an interview with TBS, Turner deferred to Sheffield’s ability to slug but was appreciative of Martinez seeing a similarity:
“Gary Sheffield has way more juice and way more power than I’ll ever have in my entire life. But definitely a very flattering comparison for me.”
Sheffield, who also wore No. 10 while he was with the Dodgers, spoke highly of Turner:
“That’s my guy. When you get somebody that runs like you, walks like you, everything this guy does … Actually, I was born with red hair. … I love his swag. That’s what jumps out to me. He’s a complete player.”
Turner finished the season batting .290/.372/.509 with 24 doubles, 27 home runs and 67 RBI. He tied a career high in homers and carried that steady presence into the postseason, hitting safely in four of five NL Division Series games. Included in that was back-to-back games with a home run.
As the Dodgers went into a disappointing offseason, one of the possibilities centered around Turner being open to switching positions. The question stemmed from the Dodgers’ potential interest in Anthony Rendon, who is expected to be among the more coveted free agents this winter.
Unsurprisingly, Turner voiced a willingness to move to first base in the event the Dodgers sign Rendon. Turner last played the position in 2016 — just one inning — and prior to that logged 59.2 innings there in 2015.