Dodgers News: Mookie Betts Evaluates Play In 2020 As ‘Serviceable’

Mookie Betts was everything and more the Los Angeles Dodgers envisioned and hoped for when completing their trade with the Boston Red Sox. Viewed as a gamble at the time, the Dodgers locked up Betts longterm by signing him to a 12-year contract extension before Opening Day.

A 2018 World Series champion with the Boston Red Sox, Betts was touted as the difference-maker for the Dodgers. He downplayed those expectations, emphasizing it would take a collective effort in order to win the title.

While that held true, there was no denying Betts very much was a spark plug. Particularly once Dodgers manager Dave Roberts settled on batting him in the leadoff spot for every game.

Despite the successful season, Betts modestly characterized his individual success, via Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times:

“I mean, it was serviceable,” Betts, 28, said. “It got the job done. That’s what we’re here for.”

When Betts’ assessment was relayed to Roberts, he could only laugh. “Man, I’ll take serviceable then if that’s what he classified it as,” Roberts said. “Mookie, like all great players, the expect a lot from themselves.

“There’s a lot of things that he did that were underlying that helped us win baseball games and enhance the Dodgers organization. I certainly would think it’s more than serviceable. We won the championship and that was the ultimate goal.”

In helping lead the Dodgers to their first World Series since 1988, Betts finished second in National League MVP voting, won a fifth consecutive Gold Glove Award, a third straight Silver Slugger (fourth overall) and was named to the All-MLB First Team.

For 2021, he enters the season as MLB’s best right fielder and No. 2 player overall.

Betts homered off Buehler

With Dodgers pitchers beginning to throw live batting practice on the backfields at Camelback Ranch, Friday saw Walker Buehler face Betts. Buehler struck Betts out in their first at-bat, but then surrendered a home run.

“It was great. Obviously there’s competition. Mookie put a good swing on a breaking ball,” Roberts said. “Obviously there’s love and respect between the players. Walker, where he’s at, we got him up and down, getting his work in. It was a very productive day all the way around.”

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