Dodgers News: Chris Taylor ‘Trying To Trend Up’

The bottom third of the Los Angeles Dodgers lineup has faced intense scrutiny this season due to a lack of production, and Chris Taylor taking the brunt of it.

Taylor went into Friday’s series opener against the New York Mets just 1-for-35 with 18 strikeouts in 15 games (11 starts) this season. He was mired in an 0-for-30 skid that extended to a 31st consecutive at-bat without collecting a hit.

Taylor then walked in his second plate appearance and followed that with a game-tying, two-run single with the bases loaded in the sixth inning.

“It just felt good to do something to help the team, honestly,” Taylor said after the Dodgers’ loss. “It’s no secret I’ve been grinding a little bit. Just trying to keep things as simple as I possibly can, look for something in the middle of the plate.

“I was just glad I was able to come through finally.”

It wound up being short-lived as the Mets answered back with two runs in the seventh inning en route to a 9-4 win.

But the Dodgers may ultimately find victory if Taylor is able to build on his first hit since March 31. Changes during the offseason to his swing produced encouraging results during Spring Training but not since then.

“It’s been a day-to-day thing. I’m just trying to trend up,” Taylor said. “It just felt good to get the barrel on the ball. I hit two balls hard tonight. I’m trying to be more line drive, the best I can be. I was just happy with that swing.”

More specifically with his swing, Taylor is focused on “being more direct to the ball.”

He added: “It’s no secret I’ve been under heaters. It’s been a constant fight for me. So just trying to be more line drive and find the best way to do that.”

Dave Roberts trusting Chris Taylor

Although Taylor has been mired in a slump to begin the season, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has continued to emphasize the need for patience while also expressing confidence in the super utility man.

“Chris right now, he’s in it. So I think for me, we have seen this before. Maybe not to this degree. Certainly, there’s a lot of swing and miss,” Roberts said before Friday’s game.

“No one is more prepared, no one cares more, he gets big hits when we need them. So for me, I’m certainly not going to jump ship on 35 plate appearances, given his track record. That’s why today, for example, he’s in there versus a lefty. … I’m trying to give Chris some opportunities.”

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