The 2020 season marked Joc Pederson’s seventh with the Los Angeles Dodgers, although it was only made possible after a trade to the L.A. Angels fell through just prior to Spring Training.
Despite reports that he remained available, Pederson stuck with the Dodgers through Summer Camp, and eventually, the regular season. He was included on the Opening Day roster and promptly recorded a hit in each of his first three games.
Pederson, however, struggled as a whole during the regular season. He batted .214 in July, .197 in August and an even worse .167 in September. In 43 overall games, the 28-year-old hit .190/.285/.397 with four doubles, seven home runs and 16 RBI over 138 plate appearances.
Similar to recent years, Pederson found a different gear during the postseason. After logging just one at-bat in the Wild Card Series, he would see his playing time increase with each round.
Pederson went 2-for-5 against the San Diego Padres in the National League Division Series before receiving the bulk of his opportunities in the NL Championship Series. In 19 plate appearances against the Atlanta Braves, he notched seven hits, one walk and only struck out twice.
Pederson deemed the Dodgers’ NLCS matchup against the Braves his favorite postseason series. He continued to shine in the World Series, going 4-for-10 with a home run and three RBI against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Pederson was at his best in Game 3 of the NLCS, tallying four hits in six at-bats, including a three-run homer in the first inning that extended the Dodgers’ lead to 5-0.
L.A. went on to win 15-3 and trimmed the Braves’ lead in the NLCS. They would drop the next two games, falling into a 3-1 deficit, but battled their way back with three consecutive wins to punch their ticket to another World Series appearance.
Pederson was one of seven Dodgers players that reached free agency the morning after the World Series concluded. He is considered unlikely to re-sign with the team, given the club’s abundance of outfielders and the fact that he will likely command a more lucrative contract and regular playing time.
However, if Pederson’s market fails to materialize, a return to the Dodgers wouldn’t be out of the question.
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