Dodgers Team News

Dodgers News: Chris Taylor Inching Closer to Return, Not Quite Ready Yet

Dodgers utility man Chris Taylor remains out of the lineup with the injury to his side he suffered in Monday’s game against the Mets. Taylor left the game with what Dodgers manager Dave Roberts was hesitant to call an oblique injury, but either way, the Dodgers are being extra cautious with his return.

Before Thursday’s series opener against the Cubs, Roberts provided an update on his injured utility man.

“He says he feels much better each day,” Roberts said. “He’s obviously active on the roster and, just not kind of sure when we’re gonna get him a start but it’s coming. And he’s getting a little anxious which is a good thing.”

The main issue and reason he isn’t able to play, however, is the fielding.

“Having him run or pinch-hit is where we’re at right now,” Roberts said. “When you’re talking about the side, potential oblique situation, I don’t want it to bleed into a week or two or more. So just trying to make sure we’re really cautious.”

After the game, Roberts had another positive update on Taylor.

“Still not certain how comfortable we are to put him out there and play defense,” Roberts said, “but today was a net positive day for Chris.”

When Could Chris Taylor Return?

It’s good news that Taylor isn’t on the injured list, as that means the Dodgers don’t think he’s going to be out for much longer. The Dodgers have made it clear that they want to be extra cautious with this injury, and Taylor agrees. They said they don’t want to make a minor injury turn into a major one, which is why he’s been out the last few days.

However, Taylor is progressing, and Roberts has said he would feel comfortable with him potentially pinch-hitting. He just isn’t quite ready to field and throw, which is why he’s not back in the lineup.

I would expect to see Taylor back in during the team’s next series against the Pirates which starts on Tuesday. The Dodgers have a day off on Monday, and they’ll use that to get everyone back on track.

He technically could make a return sometime this weekend, but I don’t think the Dodgers want to rush it, and they seem to have their contingency plans set with Taylor out. Speaking of…

Who Will Replace Chris Taylor at Shortstop?

With Taylor sidelined, and Miguel Rojas also on the injured list, the Dodgers are quite thin at shortstop.

Luke Williams, who the team called up when Betts went on the paternity list, has been playing at shortstop a majority of the time. He’s technically the only shortstop on the roster with Taylor out, however, on Thursday, we saw Mookie Betts enter the game in the 7th inning for Williams, and replace him at shortstop.

It sounds like Betts will get another opportunity at shortstop, potentially on Saturday. He looked really good in his one opportunity there, and with him at shortstop, the Dodgers would be able to somewhat clear up the logjam in the outfield. I expect to see him start a game or two at shortstop before Taylor is able to make his return.

The good news is it sounds like Taylor is inching closer to a return. He should be back in the lineup sooner rather than later, which will help with LA’s lack of depth in the infield.

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Noah Camras

Noah is an Editor for Dodgers Nation. He graduated from USC in 2022 with a B.A. in Journalism and minor in Sports Media Studies. He's been a Dodger fan his whole life, and his all-time favorite Dodgers are Matt Kemp and Russell Martin.

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