When the Los Angeles Dodgers signed Freddie Freeman to a six-year, $162 million contract it further raised expectations for a team that bolstered their lineup with the former MVP following the loss of Corey Seager in free agency.
The Dodgers won 106 games in 2021, they are projected to reach triple-digits again this season and are among the World Series favorites. But in their Opening Series against the Colorado Rockies, L.A. dropped two of three, and without timely two-out hitting on Opening Day, easily could have been swept.
Manager Dave Roberts expressed disappointment with his team’s inconsistent play and surprise they struggled when facing what’s not expected to be a stout Rockies bullpen.
Mindful of the team’s slow start and need to improve, Chris Taylor expressed his belief the Dodgers lineup is the best the sport has to offer, according to Juan Toribio of MLB.com:
“We expect to produce,” said Dodgers utilityman Chris Taylor. “We know we have, top to bottom, the best lineup in baseball, and we didn’t show that this weekend.”
Coors Field is known for the altitude and high run totals which can result in games that are never really over until the final out is recorded, but the Dodgers failed to take advantage of that.
Through the first three games of the season, their offense ranked fifth-worst in wOBA and slugging percentage. The Dodgers defense also committed costly errors that resulted in multiple unearned runs that swung the outcome of the series finale on Sunday.
Taylor: Dodgers have ‘a lot to improve on’
The Dodgers re-signing Taylor prior to the MLB lockout beginning was touted as a key move for the team in their quest to return to the World Series.
Taylor’s production and ability to play on a daily basis was then among the factors behind the Dodgers trading AJ Pollock to the Chicago White Sox for Craig Kimbrel. Taylor started in two of three games during the Opening Series against the Colorado Rockies, playing left field both times.
Normally a steady presence at any position, Taylor dropped a fly ball in the first inning that led to the Rockies scoring three runs. It was the first of multiple plays impacted by swirling winds at Coors Field during the Dodgers’ 9-4 loss.
Taylor took blame for not making the catch and noted the Dodgers collectively must play at a higher level.
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