So, who got the first Dodger hit of Spring Training?
Highly rated rookie Joc Pederson, of course!
He hit a single to the right side with one out in the third inning of yesterdays game. It was off former Dodger hurler Brad Penny, and through a shift (as described by JP Hoornstra on twitter). Pederson would also score the first run of Spring later that inning on a par of singles by Jimmy Rollins and Carl Crawford. Overall, he went 2 for 2; adding a double off the centerfield wall in his next at-bat. BTW, the photo above was tweeted out by his older brother Tyger (a one-time Dodger draft pick-33rd round in 2013).
It looks like he was able to battle through any nervous energy, via a tweet by JP Hoornstra.
Joc Pederson, who takes medication for ADD, said he was pacing in the dugout throughout this game. Finished 2-for-2 as the #Dodgers' DH.
— J.P. Hoornstra (@jphoornstra) March 4, 2015
I should add, although I always wonder if it's necessary, that you shouldn't take too seriously the results of an early spring game. This is practice, and many ballplayers (especially regulars) spend the early going retooling for the season. That means focusing attention on minute details of the game that may not necessarily lead to a positive result at that time, but will hopefully lead to success once the season begins. It's all about preparing for the season.
That being said, though, Joc Pederson's fast start out of the gate can only bolster his confidence. Via a quote shared by Mark Saxon at ESPNLosAngeles.com from Don Mattingly:
“Obviously, it probably helps him if he gets a couple hits early so he can relax instead of starting out 0-for-15 or something.”FYI, the Dodgers lost the game to the White Sox 6-4. Ho-hum.
Below are some more links to check out:
- Via Jon Heyman at CBS Sports, "To move him, Dodgers offering to pay down Ethier's contract by half."
Their offer to pay down the contract to the point where Ethier is making only about $10 million a year, or perhaps a bit less than that, may seem more than reasonable. But it apparently hasn't enticed teams to the point of a trade.
I don't want to pile on more negative thoughts onto Andre since just about everyone else has or will. Instead, I'd like to say that I firmly believe he still has value. It's just that finding a sweet spot that makes both economic and baseball sense can be a difficult endeavor. I trust a solution is at hand, and we just need to allow the process to continue. Ethier can still play ball, and he could just surprise the lot of you.
- Via Mark Saxon at ESPNLosAngeles.com, "Erik Bedard ticketed for Triple-A."
“I know where I stand. It feels fine,” Bedard said. “The game’s still fun and I like playing baseball is, basically, what it comes down to.”
- Panini releases their first Baseball card set of the 2015 season next week. It is their Donruss brand. Check out a sneak peek preview of one of the subsets here. The Yasiel Puig card is on the right. On a side note, I've never liked the original 1981 Donruss design (that Panini uses for this set), but I gotta say that they look nice in the photos.
- Vie Eric Stephen at True Blue LA, "Clayton Kershaw, Yasiel Puig highlight Dodgers' Thursday lineup."
- Via Eric Stephen at True Blue LA, "Ramon Martinez joins Orioles as special assignment pitching coordinator."
- Via Ken Gurnick at MLB.com, "(Bruce Hurst named field coordinator for Dodgers' Dominican academy."
- Via Chris Long at The Players' Tribune, "The Creepiest Mascot in Sports." I would put that new Dodger mascot thingy (the giant Dodger bobblehead man) in the top 10; without a doubt.
* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Like Dodgers Blue Heaven on facebook *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *