Monday, September 03, 2018

Welcome to the Blue, Rocky Gale!

In addition to September call-ups like Verdugo and Toles, we got word last night that veteran minor league catcher Rocky Gale has joined the Dodgers for the first time in his career. Congrats and welcome to LA. He will wear #58. Per a Dodgers press release:
(pic via Jon SooHoo at Dodger Insider)
Gale, 30, appeared in 85 games with OKC this season, where he hit .281 (83-for-285) with four home runs and 34 RBI. Gale has played in 14 Major League games in the 2015 and 2017 seasons with the San Diego Padres prior to being signed by Los Angeles as a minor league free agent on February 25. The Portland, Oregon native has slashed .262/.306/.331 in 709 games over nine minor league seasons, and was named a Pacific Coast League Mid-Season All-Star with Oklahoma City this year.
He was in the house last night, but did not have an opportunity to play. Per Craig Minami at True Blue LA:
“Rocky has had a tremendous year down there. Very good receiver, works well with the pitchers, I knew him over there in San Diego,” manager Dave Roberts said today. 
“He’s here to observe but also I’m going to do whatever I can to get him there at certain times,” Roberts said, “whether it be behind the plate to spell some of our guys, [Yasmani Grandal or Austin Barnes], but maybe an at-bat here or there too.”
BTW, you should check out this great story about Rocky at the Oklahoma City Dodgers blog, here. He chats about his love of the catcher position:
 “I was always attracted to the gear,” Gale said. “As a kid, I always wanted to strap it on.”
But being a catcher is more than just bad knees and bruises. It is the one position from which one can see the entire field; virtually every play is in front of him. With that advantage, a catcher must be the leader of the defense. He must know where the ball needs to go at all times. In this way, he plays an integral role in every pitch. For some, that is too much stress. But for Gale, this is where the excitement lies. 
“I enjoy that you’re involved in the game at all times,” Gale said. “I like winning. And at that position you can have the biggest impact behind the pitcher in winning. It’s just fun to have influence over a game every day.”
In celebration of his first stay in Los Angeles I made the above two fantasy baseball cards seen above.

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* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

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