5 Los Angeles Dodgers Who Won’t Make it Through 2014 Spring Training
Los Angeles Dodgers: 5 Players Who Won't Survive 2014 Spring Training
The Los Angeles Dodgers have a number of unanswered questions heading into the 2014 season. With Spring Training for the MLB season just around the corner, the Boys in Blue must figure out who will be coming to work out with the team and, when they get there, which players deserve to remain a part of the organization.
One player who will likely last with the team is infielder Brendan Harris. This 33-year-old veteran is a non-roster invitee but has seen a lot of time in the majors over the years. Despite not performing well enough to become a regular, he has recently proved to be sufficient for the Dodgers.
With the team in desperate need of middle infielders, Harris stands a strong chance to remain with the team. The status of Alexander Guerrero is still up in the air and, if the Dodgers do not have him ready to go by Opening Day in Australia, a guy like Harris waiting in the wings could be pivotal.
Harris has provided sub-par but not horrible numbers in his past few seasons. While bouncing around multiple teams’ AAA clubs, Harris managed to put up a .317 batting average in 106 games played for the Colorado Rockies’ affiliate in 2012. His 2013 season was much worse, but part of that could be attributed to that fact that he played for two different AAA teams as well as had a 44-game stint in the majors. All of that bouncing around will throw off a guy’s rhythm, especially if he does not get consistent playing time.
Along with Harris, there are several non-roster invitees and Dodger prospects fighting for a shot to stay in the organization, but there are several ball players who just will not have what it takes to make it through Spring Training. With all of that being said, it is time to start the list of five Dodgers who will get the boot by the time the 2014 MLB season beings. Click the “Next” button above to start the slideshow.
1. Chone Figgins
The 36-year-old took the 2013 MLB season off and for a good reason. His play has declined so much in the last three seasons that Chone Figgins was almost half the offensive weapon as his days of old. With a batting average drooping below .200 in two consecutive seasons, Figgins’ time with the Seattle Mariners was so bad that the team ate the rest of his contract and cut him. Despite his ability to play second base, Figgins was primarily a third baseman and the Dodgers really do not need that as much as the rest of their infield positions. Unless Figgins can surprise us with a miraculously great Spring Training, I do not see him remaining with the Dodgers for very long.
2. J.C. Boscan
J.C. Boscan is a 34-year-old “veteran” who has only ever played 17 games in the majors. The Venezuelan catcher has floated around the minor leagues since the age of 17, in 1997, and has been mediocre even at that level. Boscan has not recorded a batting average over .227 at any minor league level. In 17 seasons, he has recorded a total of 43 major league home runs, so he is not a power option either. As a non-roster invitee and with three catchers already on the 40-man roster, Boscan does not stand much of a chance to remain with the club.
3. Miguel Olivo
Another catcher who just doesn’t have what it takes is Miguel Olivo. Like Boscan, Olivo is fighting against father time as he will turn 36 in July. Although Olivo’s numbers over his 12-year career are better than Boscan’s and he has played a lot of time in the majors, his most recent job situation is unsettling.
Mike Petriello, of dodgersdigest.com, recounts the way Olivo ended his time with the Miami Marlins: “The Marlins placed Miguel Olivo on the restricted list after the team refused his request to be released and he walked out on the club at the start of Friday’s game.” This is not the type of ball player you want on your team. His selfishness because of lack of play with likely rear its ugly head again and he will leave the Dodgers, one way or another.
4. Sam Demel
Finally, we have arrived at a player who is not old and decrepit. Unfortunately for 28-year-old Sam Demel, his fate seems to be sealed in the same envelope as his aged predecessors on this list. The right-handed pitcher had a couple of decently mediocre years with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2010 and 2011, but since then he has not impressed. As a reliever in the minors last year, Demel did manage to finish the season with a 1.72 ERA in 35 appearances.
Although his 2013 AAA experience was solid, his past reflects a much bleaker outlook. The two seasons prior he had a 4.21 ERA at the AAA level and was worse in the majors. With a solid core of relievers on the 40-man roster and in the farm system, I do not see the Dodgers hanging on to Demel for very long.
5. Daniel Moskos
As another non-roster invitee, Daniel Moskos looks to join Boscan on a bus back home. The left-handed pitcher is another young reliever with limited major league experience and underwhelming minor league performances. In his seven seasons in the minors, Moskos’ career ERA is 4.43 and his last two years have been worse than that. It would take a miracle showing for Moskos to impress Pitching Coach Rick Honeycutt and Manager Don Mattingly enough to stay with the Boys in Blue.
That does it for this list. Please leave a comment telling me which of these guys you agree or disagree with and if there are any others you do not believe will last through Spring Training.