With Trea Turner no longer a Dodger, this left the organization to turn to in-house options to fill in for Turner’s absence. Gavin Lux appeared to be the perfect fit for this role as a player who spent the majority of his high-school days playing shortstop.
For one, Lux came to the Dodgers playing shortstop when he was drafted in the first round in 2016. The 25-year-old has the experience in this position, but due to the substantial amount of shortstops LA has acquired over the years, the Dodgers have not been able to utilize him to his fullest extent.
Lux has spent 59% of his total career plate appearances as a second baseman, with 23% at shortstop, 13% in left field, and the rest between CF, RF, 3B, DH, and PH. Now that former teammates, Corey Seager and Turner, are out of LA, this allows Lux to step up to the plate.
It may have been a blessing in disguise that Lux was able to take a view from the backseat while watching Seager and Turner:
“Both (Corey Seager and Trea Turner) are two of the best shortstops in baseball. Arguably the two best, so I got to learn under them and saw how they went about their business,” Lux said. “I loved playing with both of them, but I think it’s cool that I get to slide back to where I grew up playing, so I’m excited.”
Lux has always had the tools to be a great shortstop with his strong arm, quick reflexes, and excellent range. Lux shared how the transition from second base to shortstop has been for him:
“I feel comfortable on the left side when it comes to reading balls and reading it off the bat,” Lux said. “That’s what I did growing up, and I feel really comfortable going back over there.”
Although Lux has been playing shortstop since high school, he admits that he may not have been as prepared to tackle the nuances of the position at a professional level during his rookie year.
“I think I would’ve been ready [to play shortstop three years] ago and I would’ve taken my bumps and bruises, but I’m not sure how I would’ve handled it,” Lux said. “But I think now, mentally and physically, I’m way more prepared to handle it than I would’ve been three years ago. It’s night and day, for sure.”
Now that he has the added experience under his belt, Lux is more confident than ever to step into a position where the team can rely on him the most.
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