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Dodgers: Dave Roberts Won’t Commit to a Position for Miguel Vargas Just Yet

Immediately after the Dodgers were bounced from the playoffs, president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman hinted at the possibility of a youth movement in Los Angeles. A week or two later, CEO Stan Kasten reiterated that possibility.

One of the key elements of any youth movement would likely be Miguel Vargas, who was the Pacific Coast League’s Prospect of the Year and L.A.’s Minor League Player of the Year. Vargas got a cup of coffee with the Dodgers in 2022, and while it didn’t go well overall, he showed flashes of the potential that has the Dodgers so excited.



When L.A. manager Dave Roberts met with the media on Tuesday at the Winter Meetings, he was asked about Vargas potentially being the Dodgers’ everyday third baseman in 2023.

“I expect Miguel Vargas to have an impact on our club. At what position, I really can’t speak to right now. In the same vein of where Gavin [Lux] is going to play next year.

“There’s a lot of things to still do. But he’s at the ballpark this week trying to get better. So Miguel Vargas is going to be very exciting for all of us. I’m excited about Miguel.”

The phrase “get better” does a lot of work in that quote. Everyone has always agreed that Vargas can hit; the only question has been, where will he play on defense? His third base defense in the minors led many to believe that position is simply not an option for him at the big-league level. He also played some first and second base, but with Freddie Freeman entrenched at first and the shift going away to make second a much harder position, neither of those seem likely.

Which might leave just two options: left field and designated hitter. The team is unlikely to just give up and make a 23-year-old a full-time DH, but he’ll likely get his share of at-bats there. If Vargas is “at the ballpark this week” as Roberts says, it’s likely to try to become a passable left-fielder, since L.A. has an opening there and it’s a good place to hide a guy with a great bat and not much glove.

Wherever it is, though, we’re likely to see the version off Vargas on offense that has had everyone so excited.

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Jeff Snider

Jeff was born into a Dodgers family in Southern California and is now raising a Dodgers family of his own in Utah. He's been blogging about baseball and the Dodgers 2004 and doing it professionally since 2015. Favorite Player: Clayton Kershaw Favorite Moment: Kirk Gibson's homer will always have a place, but Kershaw homer on Opening Day 2013 might be the winner.

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7 Comments

    1. I like it too. You could also go with Vargas, Outman and Thompson with Betts at 2B. Lots of options…

  1. The team is only losing one good bat(Trea). If Vargas and Outman can hit better than Taylor and Belli and if we get a good hitting shortstop or 2nd baseman then overall the offense is improved over last yr.

  2. I’m so tired of them sittin’ on their
    hands & doin’ nothing at the winter
    meetings. CHEAPSKATES this off
    season!

  3. If Vargas is really that poor defensively & no guarantee he will hit in the majors, then perhaps package him in a trade for Bryan Reynolds & either Mike Burrows or Jared Trilio from the Pirates. Vargas, Jose Ramos, Carlos Duran, Caleb Ferguson, Andre Jackson & Nick Nastrini to the Pirates. See what it would take. There’s also Brandon Nimmo & Andy Benintendi out there yet also!

  4. Can’t trust Vargas as an everyday player out there defensively at any position. He’s another Matt Beaty, a liability on the field in physical and mental errors waiting to happen. ML hitters are very adept to hit to the weakest link to win games. He has a big hype but he haven’t been impressive to hit big league pitching. Use him as a trade and see what you can get with his résumé.

  5. What position ? The Dodgers either didn’t develop him at a position or he failed as defensive player wherever they played him ??

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