Dodgers News: Dave Roberts Gave Encouraging Message To Sheldon Neuse, DJ Peters

As the corresponding roster moves to Cody Bellinger and Zach McKinstry off the 10-day injured list on Saturday, the Los Angeles Dodgers optioned Sheldon Neuse and DJ Peters to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

The team could have elected to make a change with the 14-man pitching staff, but with a bullpen game on the horizon, the decision was made to keep with the short bench for at least one more turn through the starting rotation.

Neuse and Peters are in Oklahoma City after being among the players the Dodgers relied on amid injuries to Bellinger, Gavin Lux, McKinstry, AJ Pollock and Corey Seager. “With both guys the message was basically they should be proud of what they did for us,” manager Dave Roberts said.

“I really don’t care about the stat line. They prepared each day, they practiced the right way, they played good defense for us. Being younger players and not playing every day is very difficult.

“I just wanted them to enjoy this experience and know that they helped us get through some tough times. Now they both get the opportunity to play essentially every day and work on their swings, and be ready to come help us later.”

Neuse batted .172 with three home runs and four RBI while appearing in 28 games for the Dodgers. He was recalled when Gavin Lux landed on the 10-day IL due to right wrist soreness. Neuse struggled to find consistency at the plate, but gave Roberts the option of playing him at second base, third base and corner outfield spots.

“There’s so much talent and age here. All you’ve got to do is talk to the players around you and you’re going to learn something every day,” Neuse said this past week.

“That’s just kind of what I’ve been doing. Whether it’s picking things up on pitchers or moving around defensively. Just trying to find an edge any way I can. There’s a lot of knowledge here.”

Peters grew more comfortable with Dodgers

Peters hit .192 with two doubles, one home run and four RBI over 18 games. He made his MLB debut this season and spent three separate stints up with L.A., the latest of which saw the outfield prospect at his most comfortable.

“I feel night and day,” Peters said after hitting his first career home run. “In my first stint, when we played the Padres, I was definitely excited. Went back down to the Minor Leagues, learned a lot, and am extremely grateful for that.

“Still getting some at-bats under my belt but feeling a lot more comfortable every day. Not only in the field but on the basepaths and in the box.”

Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and Roberts have both noted the difficulty young players historically have in a bench role, and expressed optimism the likes of Neuse, Peters and others would still find success down the line.

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