Dodgers News: Dave Roberts Remains Confident in Gavin Lux’s Defense at Shortstop

Dodgers News: Dave Roberts Remains Confident in Gavin Lux’s Defense at Shortstop


Spring training should not be a time to overreact to any stat lines or performances. Players might be working on something or just getting their bodies ready for the grind of a 162-game season. This spring, the defense of Dodgers shortstop Gavin Lux has come up more than a handful of times already.

In his first fielding opportunity, Lux committed a throwing error while ranging to his right. Then, he misfired again later in the game and nearly a third time had it not been for stellar defense at first.

On Wednesday against the Chicago White Sox, Yoshinobu surrendered five runs on six hits. Two of those hits were infield singles to Lux who could not make the throw over to first in time.

Despite a worrying trend from the 26-year-old, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts does not seem concerned. He expressed confidence in his young shortstop after Wednesday’s game.

“With Gavin, it’s just more of continuing to run him out there so he can build confidence in how he’s catching the ball, his footwork and getting the ball across the diamond. I’m not going to let a small sample – right now – of what we’ve seen. I just expect it to keep getting better with repetitions.”

Dave Roberts via Bill Plunkett of the O.C. Register

Roberts is right. Spring training is a small sample size for anyone, especially a player returning from injury.

“To do anything where you’re trying to be perfect is difficult and I do think there’s some part of it where he hasn’t played baseball in quite some time. So as he’s making plays and the transition as he’s trying to get it across the diamond, he’s trying to be too fine with it. I don’t think it’s the mechanics of it. I think it’s just freeing himself up to be free and be the athlete that he is.”

Dave Roberts via Bill Plunkett of the O.C. Register

This is the first time Lux will play shortstop full-time since Double-A in 2019. Unfortunately, he spent the whole offseason rehabbing his knee when, normally, he could have spent that time preparing to play shortstop.

All the practice in the world cannot replicate game speed though, and Roberts knows that.

“I think we just have to understand that it still takes time to get back up to major-league speed and feel that once the bell rings that it’ll be there where it needs to be.”

Dave Roberts to Bill Plunkett of the O.C. Register

The Dodgers play seven more spring training games before they start the season against the San Diego Padres in South Korea. After that, they will play a three-game exhibition freeway series against the Los Angeles Angels before Opening Day against the St. Louis Cardinals.

That gives Lux several opportunities to continue to work on his mechanics and get used to the position.

Photo Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

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