Dodgers News: Justin Turner Focused On Reducing Strikeouts For 2020 MLB Season
Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner hits a home run against the Washington Nationals
Tommy Gilligan/USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers finished the 2019 season with a National League record and all-time franchise high 279 home runs, but also were susceptible to strikeouts. Of course, it’s a trend that has swept across baseball over recent years.

L.A. was led by a career-best 47 home runs from Cody Bellinger, with Joc Pederson (36 home runs), Max Muncy (35), Justin Turner (27), Corey Seager (19), Will Smith (15), A.J. Pollock (15), Chris Taylor (12), Alex Verdugo (12) and David Freese (11) also providing power.

In Turner’s case, his home run surge again came as the weather heated up. His first longball wasn’t hit until April 30, but one week later he slugged a career-high three homers. Turner hit 10 in August, which came at an opportune time as it earned the Justin Turner Foundation a donation from REX Real Estate.

With another productive season in the books, Turner is focused on reducing his strikeouts in what will be a seventh year with the Dodgers, as seen on SportsNet LA:

“The strikeouts were up a little bit last year. Dug into some numbers, had some conversations with some our hitting guys and Andrew Friedman. That’s something that I take a lot of pride in and I know your partner in crime — Nomar — it kind of rubs him the wrong way to see all the strikeouts in the game, and I’m very similar. If I had to pinpoint one thing, seeing those strikeout numbers go up last year was a little frustrating for me.”

After a career-high 107 strikeouts in 2016, Turner cut that number to 56 during an All-Star season the following year. He further improved by trimming it down to a carer-best 54 strikeouts in 2018.

Turner’s strikeouts rose to 88 last season, with the bulk of those (23) coming during 29 games (26 starts) in March and April. He got back on track during the month of May, striking out just seven times.

Even with the unusual spike, Turner’s 16% strikeout rate was only his fourth-highest mark through six seasons with the Dodgers. Moreover, his 9.3% walk rate was the third-highest during that same span.

Dodgers manager Dave Robert has regularly lauded Turner for his steady approach at the plate and last season referred to him as being at the core of the team’s approach. “Pick and choose my spots to be aggressive, pick and choose my spots when trying to run long at-bats, and all the ones in between just try to get a good pitch to hit,” Turner told

“There’s conversations obviously about stringing together quality at-bat, quality at-bat, quality at-bat, and that’s when we put up our crooked numbers.”

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