Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers suffered a major blow this week as their projected starting shortstop, Gavin Lux, sustained a torn ACL in his right knee along with some damage to the LCL.
With Lux likely to be sidelined for the entire 2023 season, Miguel Rojas is expected to take over the starting shortstop job. “The first thing that I felt was pain for Gavin,” Rojas began.
“A young kid that has been working his ass off to be ready for the season, to be the everyday shortstop for this team and be a big part of this club. I just feel bad for him that he’s going to have to go through whatever he has to do.
“But I’m sure he’s going to come out stronger than ever. He’s been working really hard and I know it’s not going to stop. What it means for me is what I’ve been preparing for. I’ve been playing shortstop every day for the last four or five years of my career.
“I went through the offseason thinking I need to prepare for 162 games, and here it is. Here’s an opportunity that I’m not going to take for granted.
“I know what I have to do to be part of a winning team, and I’m looking forward to this opportunity to post every single day and be ready to contribute as much as I can to win a World Series.”
The Dodgers acquired Rojas from the Miami Marlins during the offseason in exchange for prospect Jacob Amaya. After making his MLB debut with the Dodgers in 2014, Rojas spent the last five seasons as the Marlins starting shortstop.
The original plan for Rojas was to fill a utility role this year. “It could have been at short, could have been at second, third, or first base. Regardless, this is a team. It doesn’t matter who’s going down or happens to be injured. You’ve got to be ready,” Rojas said.
“If you’re the guy on the bench and you’re going to be a role player, you’ve got to be ready for this opportunity. Unfortunately, it happened to Lux. If that means me playing shortstop, that’s what I need to do. I prepared for this opportunity and I’m going to be ready for it.”
Miguel Rojas withdraws from Team Venezuela for 2023 WBC
To further continue preparing for his starting role with the Dodgers, Rojas made the decision to remain in camp and withdraw from the 2023 World Baseball Classic.
Rojas had been poised to join Team Venezuela next week, which he may still do if an opportunity to log at-bats every day arises.
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