Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Trayce Thompson started in consecutive games on Tuesday for the first time since May 8-9. Manager Dave Roberts joked prior to the second of the four-game Freeway Series that Thompson was in the lineup due to his success the night prior.
“It’s kind of my two-home rule,” Roberts said. “You hit two homers and you’re back in the lineup.” Thompson’s multi-home run game was the first of his career, and pulled him into a tie with Joc Pederson and Corey Seager for the team lead with six home runs.
After Monday’s loss, Roberts acknowledged Thompson was playing his way into the conversation of being an everyday player on a team that’s deep — albeit more so in terms of bodies than production — in the outfield.
On Tuesday, the rookie manager pumped the brakes on anointing Thompson a regular starter. “We’re not there yet, but he’s doing great things,” Roberts said. “The great thing about him is, when his name is in the lineup, he’s prepared.”
Roberts stopping short of proclaiming Thompson an everyday player is not an indictment on the 25 year old, however. “I don’t think 72 at-bats is enough sample,” Roberts said. “Not to say he can’t do it, because he’s going to, but we still have other guys who warrant playing time as well.”
When compared to Carl Crawford, the Dodgers’ starting left fielder, Thompson has appeared in more games and logged more plate appearances. Crawford has played in 18 games and recorded 54 plate appearances, while Thompson’s numbers are 31 and 81, respectively.
Thompson’s .291/.341/.582 batting line is also superior to Crawford’s .222/.259/.296 slash line. What’s more, Thompson is hitting .289/.360/.556 against right-handers, while Crawford is batting .250/.288/.333 with three extra-base hits and five RBIs.