Friday, June 08, 2012

Dodgers Have Weighty Decisions Around The Bend

Don Mattingly has certainly been Tommy Lasorda-esque this year, somehow pulling the most out of players and getting them to overdeliver despite playing with a revolving door of injuries and substitutes. But guess whose shadow is looming large?

PHILADELPHIA — Juan Uribe is expected to be activated from the 15-day disabled list Monday and Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly said he plans to play him at third base.

Mattingly has also said he intends to continue playing Jerry Hairston Jr. at second base because he wants to build continuity in the middle of the infield.

So where does that leave Elian Herrera?

If he continues to play the way he has, Mattingly said he will find a place for him.

The 27-year-old rookie utility man entered Wednesday batting .304. He drove in the winning run in each of the Dodgers' two previous games.

"If you're getting two hits every night, you keep playing," Mattingly said, laughing. "If you keep driving in the winning run every night, you keep playing."

Herrera figures to get starts in center field or at third base on days Uribe rests. He could also play second base when Hairston takes a day off.

"We'll figure it out," Mattingly said. "There are plenty of days for everybody, it seems like."

Lineup decisions will ultimately be based on performance.

"The game tells you what to do with guys," Mattingly said. "I'm not going to sit here and say Elian's going to play every day or not going to play."

Well, if you won't, I will! Herrera has either scored a run and/or had at least one RBI in five of his six games. Herrera has a .779 OPS; Uribe has a .640 OPS (his season high, btw. Herrera has a .306 BA; Uribe's is .250. Herrera is also not fat. Uribe is.

I trust Donnie to make the right choice here. Don't give in to the big footsteps (even if they shake the ground)! Let's bring Uribe a treadmill.


Fred's Brim said...

I look forward to Juanny coming back and being the next happy surpise for us

Hideo Nomo said...

It's fine. One of three things will happen:

-Uribe comes back and is solid, meaning Hererra can be a weapon off the bench.

-Uribe comes back and is solid waste, leading to him getting benched in favor of Hererra.

-Uribe comes back and solidly breaks his wrist again.

Steve Sax said...

I think Uribe is somewhere between solid and liquid. I'm thinking, Flubber.

Franklin Stubbs said...

If anything, Juan Uribe is a non-Newtonian fluid, due to his well-documented viscosity.