LOS ANGELES- The Dodgers option top prospect, INF Gavin Lux, and will now report to the club’s alternative training facilities at the University of Southern California (USC) just days before Opening Day.
Lux, who many expected to perform at a high level this season and was involved in talks of winning the Rookie of the Year Award, arrived late to Summer Camp and did not specify why. His performance on Monday night’s game against the Arizona Diamondbacks did not help his case.
Lux air mailed a throw, recording a throwing error in the sixth inning and also failed to turn what seemed to be a routine double play in the seventh inning. Lux’s only plate appearance resulted in a groundout to second base.
Whether or not the decision to arrive late to camp was worth it will only be up to Lux and if the decision played a role in this roster move, we may never know for certain.
The one thing we can certainly agree on is Dodgers are running a tight ship in terms of space and with Opening Day only days away, some players are certainly standing out.
Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager has been on an absolute tear since arriving to camp, as well as INF/OF Chris Taylor. With second base the only position “up-for-grabs,” it seems as if Taylor, Enrique Hernández, Max Muncy and even Mookie Betts will have the position taken care of in some sort of rotation.
Lux, who ranks No. 2 overall in baseball by MLB.com, will remain close to the club and further develop at the USC facility nearby. Here, it is likely the club’s top prospect will prepare for a mid/late season call up to assist the Dodgers make a 2020 playoff push.
Although the Dodgers chose to option Lux, the high expectations from the 22-year-old remain. According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the Dodgers had no intentions of trading away the young star, even when engaged in trade talks for Cleveland’s superstar shortstop Francisco Lindor. Cleveland was reported to be seeking Lux and pitcher Dustin May back in Dec. 2019.
With the shortened 2020 season, the Dodgers stacked roster allows Lux to be optioned without creating any gaps in the team and will allow him to catch up on missed time at camp.
Although all teams will start with 30-man rosters for the first two weeks of play, they will finish the regular season with 26-man rosters. The Dodgers will have to option four players as the season progresses and it will mostly come at the pitching position.
The Dodgers decision to option their top prospect will also offer the club security in case any rostered infielders require any time on the 10-day injured list.
The Dodgers will open the 2020 season against the San Francisco Giants at 7:00 p.m. in Los Angeles and will air on ESPN. Dodgers ace, Clayton Kershaw, gets his ninth opening day start for the boys in blue.