Los Angeles Dodgers third base coach Dino Ebel has long been regarded as one of the best at his position, but there’s been criticism over recent decisions, with the latest being sending Austin Barnes home on a Mookie Betts double.
Barnes was easily thrown out, and rather than having runners at second and third with nobody out and Trea Turner and Freddie Freeman due up, the Dodgers wound up not scoring that inning of a 7-4 loss to the San Francisco Giants.
“It was tough,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of the sequence appearing to halt momentum. “I know Dino is going to wear this one, but I’m not going to waver in my confidence. It’s one of those positions on the field where when you do things well, no one talks about it. “But if it doesn’t go well, you’re the center of attention.
The play was the 15th time the Dodgers had a runner thrown out at home plate this season, which is tied for eighth-most among all teams. That has them just above the league average of 13.
Conversely, the Dodgers have scored from first base on a double 46 times this season, which is the best mark in baseball. They also are above league average in scoring from second base on a single.
Statistics certainly point to Ebel being a quality third base coach, and even with some of his recent decisions resulting in outs, Roberts doesn’t have any concerns.
“He’s as good as there is,” Roberts said of Ebel.
Justin Turner: Dino Ebel made great decision
Ebel was the center of attention two weeks ago when he had Justin Turner test Christian Yelich’s arm to no avail in a 4-0 loss at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers previously had success doing so when facing the Milwaukee Brewers on the road, but Yelich threw Turner out with relative ease.
“He made a good throw,” Turner said that night. “Right on the money. It was a great send by Dino, obviously, with two outs there. Felt like I got a good jump, and was out. As soon as the ball is hit, my job is to go until Dino stops me.
“I wasn’t expecting him to stop me, and Yelich made a good throw. I think with two outs, 99.9% of the time we’re going to get the send. You throw a one-hopper right on the plate like that, there’s not a lot you can do. I got thrown out in Milwaukee too on a perfect throw. I got thrown out in Colorado earlier this year on a perfect throw.
“I feel like whenever the slowest guy on the team is running, outfielders seem to make perfect throws.”
Roberts added: “It was a good send with two outs. If there’s anything you could poke holes with is Yelich’s arm strength. But he made a heck of a throw.”
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