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Friday, April 2, 2010

DeWitt To Start At Second

Continuing with the good news, Blake DeWitt has been named the starting second baseman, sending Ronnie Belliard and Jamey Carroll to the bench, right where they belong.

Again Joe, wise move. Kudos.

DeWitt was originally told he'd been sent down to the minors, but it was just an April Fools' joke. The reasoning given in that joke really sounded legit though, considering the recent history of the Dodgers and all. I can see why Blake believed them:

They'd be sending the second baseman [DeWitt] down to Triple-A Albuquerque to get more at-bats with veterans Ronnie Belliard and Jamey Carroll handling second-base duties for the Dodgers.

When told that he actually would be starting in the bigs:

"I was pretty excited because I went from a real low to a real high," a grinning DeWitt said. "They played it off real good. I was not expecting it at all. Once they told me I couldn't even hardly laugh."

"It's good," DeWitt said. "I worked hard this offseason. I knew what I needed to improve in and I still know what I need to improve on. But I feel good where I'm at and I feel I can contribute to this team."

More of Torre's surprisingly sound reasoning:

"This is based on the fact that if there's a regular player out there it's Blake DeWitt," Torre said. "Dewitt is a young guy who needs to play every day. Jamey Carroll and Belliard are two guys that can play against left-handers, so we have flexibility in that regard."

DeWitt, for the record, has hit better against lefties in his career than righties. Much, much better in fact. Via Baseball-Reference:

Against Lefties: .281/.393/.449/.842, 135 OPS+, 17/19 BB/SO
Against Righties: .250/.316/.366/.682, 90 OPS+, 31/56 BB/SO

So a platoon doesn't make sense really. Belliard gets a start a week, perhaps a start at another position (1st, 3rd), and Carroll is strictly a bench player who never should have been signed in the first place (that one's on you, Ned Colletti).

Oh, and my favorite Blake DeWitt picture must make an appearance:

The excitement on his face is palpable.