So it’s now the post-Seager era for the Dodgers in 2018, what are the next options?
ICYMI, Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager will undergo season ending elbow surgery (Tommy John) on his throwing arm. This will put him out for 2018 and likely the early part of the 2019 season. Brook covered it for us here.
Corey Seager will undergo Tommy John surgery. He is done for 2018.
— Andy McCullough (@ByMcCullough) April 30, 2018
The first take of many fans (self included) is why wasn’t this handled in the offseason? It has been a problem since the second half of last season, and it has obviously had an effect on his play all around. The team has always kept fairly hush-hush on the severity of the injury, leaving Dodgers’ fans to wonder and fear.
All of us on the inside:
— Max (@aoxamaxoa) April 30, 2018
At any rate, there is still a lot of baseball to be played, and it turns out, there is no pity party given by MLB when you lose one of your best players.
Next options up
As Brook mentioned, Chris Taylor almost becomes the de facto shortstop for the rest of the season, with Kiké Hernandez backing him up. Taylor, of course, came up as a glove-first shortstop with the Seattle Mariners in 2014, so he is no stranger to the position. With Hernandez, he has been somewhat outspoken in the past about how his favorite position is shortstop, so there’s the smallest bit of silver lining to take away.
Trickle down effect
Losing Seager is obviously an ginormous void to fill not only on the field, but in the lineup — we’re talking about a two-time Silver Slugger award winner and a consensus top-3 shortstop in the league. Losing Seager also means losing Taylor in centerfield… but does spell opportunity for other players.
Could this be the door opening for Alex Verdugo to get his first real shot? The kid has really proven all he can in Oklahoma City. Time to let the man play.
Until Puig gets healthy and figures out his life, and with Joc Pederson now playing well (for now), an outfield of Pederson/Verdugo/Kemp isn’t all that bad looking on paper.
Options outside of the system are pretty thin:
JJ Hardy is 35 and still a free agent… but you could argue that he also hasn’t been good since 2013.
Marcus Semien, 27, plays shortstop for an Athletics team that is notorious for trading away good, young talent.
Adeiny Hechavarria, 29, is playing relatively well for a Tampa Bay team that isn’t going anywhere. LA and TB have matched up well on trades before… just saying.
In all likelihood, what we have is what we’re getting, a Taylor/Hernandez tandem at shortstop, with eventually healthy players like Justin Turner and Logan Forsythe making their way back from the disabled list to solidify the rest of the infield.
So, until next time, Corey, we love you and get well soon.