Dodgers Team News

Dodgers: Dave Roberts Really Likes What Jason Heyward Brings to LA Ballclub

The Los Angeles Dodgers have one gapping question that has yet to be answered: “who will be their starting center fielder?”

With Cody Bellinger being non-tendered and signing with the Chicago Cubs this offseason, LA will now have a new player cover grounds at center. The Dodgers have various options to fill that role, but none have the experience of their newest member, Jason Heyward.

Heyward signed a minor league contract with the Boys in Blue, including an invitation to major league spring training. Spring training is officially underway, and Dodger manager Dave Roberts told the media that he loves what he is seeing from Heyward thus far.

“Intangibles of what a guy like J-Hey does, I already know the value. I’m very bullish on the swing, the player, the person and how he’s going to help our ballclub this year.”

The 33-year-old is a 13-year veteran who spent most of his career with the Atlanta Braves and Chicago Cubs. However, things have not been the same for him since 2020, as his play and playing time have diminished. In 2022, Heyward only played in 48 games due to a knee inflammation and didn’t play for the rest of the season. Chicago ended up releasing him at the end of the year.

As we all know, the Dodgers are known for revitalizing players’ careers, and by the sounds of it, Heyward is looking excellent in spring training.

The lefty batter is known for his defensive ability even during his prime; however, Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman said his hitting prowess looks impressive.

“He’s been putting in the work. I love his adjustments,” Freeman said of Heyward’s swing, going on to pantomime how his hand placement has been adjusted. “It’s a big difference. He has a better chance to get to the ball. Everyone is very happy with his adjustments.”

If Heyward can continue this great start, Dodger fans could see him on the Opening Day lineup. But before we get too ahead of ourselves, it is great to see Jason play like the former All-Star he was.

The five-time Gold Glove winner is putting people on notice; maybe it’s time we start listening.

Ricardo Sandoval

Born and Raised in the East side of Los Angeles. Ricardo is a staff writer at Dodgers Nation and on the LA Sports Report network of sites. He's also a lifelong Dodgers and Lakers fan. Ricardo is an alumnus of CSUN (Go Matadors).

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