Corey Seager’s rehabilitation continued in shallow left field at Dodger Stadium on Friday, as he played light catch with strength and conditioning coach Brandon McDaniel. The shortstop began throwing earlier this week for the first time since straining his left hamstring June 12 against the Angels. Soon, the Dodgers hope, he’ll be playing in rehab games.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Seager and outfielder A.J. Pollock have expressed their willingness to play games during the All-Star break, either for a minor league affiliate or at the club’s spring training facility in Arizona. Pollock has been on the injured list with an infected elbow since April 30. The four-day All-Star break begins July 8.
“If all goes well, they’ll both be playing in some capacity, getting at-bats,” Roberts said.
After missing nearly all of the 2018 campaign, Seager endured early struggles this season before finding his rhythm in May. From May 21 until his injury, the 25-year-old was second in FanGraphs WAR, behind only Mike Trout. He was second in doubles, fourth in batting average and fifth in OPS.
“I think we’ve done a very good job of giving him consistent playing time, whether every day or five times a week,” Roberts said when asked if he believed the everyday role was the difference for Taylor. “I think that he just wasn’t right mechanically.”
“When he is going well, it really doesn’t matter who he’s facing. So right now he’s been swinging the bat well. I like the at-bat quality. It was just a matter of time like we had talked about.”
Sborz on IL, Beaty called up
On Thursday, the Dodgers, in need of pitchers, optioned Matt Beaty to triple-A Oklahoma City. Turns out, he didn’t need to get on a flight. Beaty was back with the Dodgers on Friday after the club recalled him and placed right-hander Josh Sborz on the 10-day injured list with lower back soreness.
“We actually had a flight booked and he was going to head out today,” Roberts said.
Sborz made his major league debut Thursday. He was charged with three runs in one-plus inning as the Dodgers’ bullpen nearly blew a five-run lead in the ninth inning against the San Francisco Giants.
Bellinger, Pederson advance
Outfielders Cody Bellinger and Joc Pederson are the Dodgers’ only finalists to advance to the starters election ballot for the National League All-Star team. Bellinger amassed the most votes across the majors with 3,685,170. Pederson finished ninth among the nine outfield finalists.
Voting for the starter election begins at 9 a.m. PT on Wednesday and concludes at 1 p.m. PT on Thursday.
Roberts said Scott Alexander hasn’t thrown off a mound yet as of Friday since going on the injured list June 11 with a left forearm injury. Roberts insisted the Dodgers will “take it slow” with Alexander. The left-hander will throw multiple bullpen sessions before he is sent on a rehab assignment. ...The Dodgers haven’t decided who will replace the injured Rich Hill in the starting rotation, Roberts said. Ross Stripling is the likely choice, but the decision could be affected by how the team’s bullpen is used before a fifth starter is needed Tuesday.