With AJ Pollock sidelined due to a Grade 2 right hamstring strain, the Los Angeles Dodgers initially attempted to fill his void by having Cody Bellinger and Chris Taylor in the outfield.
However, the 2019 National League MVP has continued to struggle, and Taylor dealt with neck trouble, opening the door for other players to receive opportunities. Among those to benefit include Gavin Lux, who has made eight starts in left field since being recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City.
An infielder by trade, the 23-year-old had never played the position before the 2021 season. His only other professional experience in the outfield was appearing in one game in center field for Oklahoma City this year.
Lux nonetheless has enjoyed learning how to play left field on the fly and credited some of the veterans on the Dodgers for making his transition a seamless one, per SportsNet LA:
“I’ve actually enjoyed it. Just being able to talk to fans and kind of mess with them out in left field a little bit, you don’t really get to do that in the infield. I’m enjoying it and just picking Belli’s, Mookie’s and Pollo’s brains out there. It’s been fun.”
Thus far in left field, Lux has recorded eight putouts without committing an error. He also has found success at the plate since rejoining the Dodgers, recording at least two hits in four games.
For the season he is batting .239/.323/.369 with 11 doubles, four triples, seven home runs and 45 RBI in 350 plate appearances across 93 games.
But while Lux has generally been comfortable at his new position, lack of communication led to a minor collision that resulted in Cody Bellinger suffering a non-displaced fracture in his left ribs.
Roberts sees more confidence in Lux
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has taken notice of Lux’s resurgence and attributed it to him feeling more confident as a player. “There’s just more of a calmness in the batter’s box,” Roberts said.
“I think he’s really settled in, he’s allowing his athleticism and ability to be a good baseball player kind of come to the forefront.
“There’s just no panic in the box. He’s always had the ability to look over the baseball, and now there’s a calm, a clarity, and he’s using the whole field, taking really good at-bats and helping us win some ballgames. Really, really excited for him.”
Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and more!