Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has regularly raved about Chris Taylor over the past few seasons, and the bulk of that praise this year has been focused on getting the super utility player into the 2021 MLB All-Star Game.
Taylor rose one spot to fifth place among National League outfielders in the latest voting returns update. The top nine outfielders in each league will advance to the second phase of All-Star Game.
A selection would be Taylor’s first of his career, and in the eyes of Roberts, more than warranted.
“The reason I went on record about a week ago in saying that in 2021 he’s an absolute All-Star, is because no one in baseball can do what he does,” Roberts said. “That’s the versatility and ability to hit left and right. And also play above-average defense all over the diamond. So I think that in itself makes him an All-Star player.
“When you try to bucket him as a center fielder, second baseman, shortstop or left fielder, you’re actually doing him a disservice. The All-Stars are to showcase the best players in each league for that particular year, and he is one of the best players in the National League, hands down. It’s a pretty easy sell.
“And also, people need to promote him because doesn’t promote himself. There’s a lot of self promotion in sports and this game, where he’s a blue collar guy. Give him the love, please.”
Of 12 players who have started at six different positions this season, Taylor and Aledmys Diaz are the only who are better than league average at plate this season. Though, Diaz doesn’t have enough plate appearances to qualify.
Roberts trying to get Taylor rest
For all the importance and value Roberts seeing Taylor as having, he’s also expressed a desire to get the 30-year-old more rest. Taylor hasn’t yet been afforded many nights off because of injuries to Cody Bellinger, Gavin Lux, Corey Seager, Zach McKinstry and Max Muncy.
That may soon change with Muncy due to be activated Tuesday and Bellinger likely returning from the 10-day injured list for the series finale against the San Diego Padres. Meanwhile, Seager is expected to begin a rehab assignment this weekend.
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