Dodgers News: Mookie Betts May Continue Receiving Occasional Starts At 2nd Base
Mookie Betts
Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Photo

When the Los Angeles Dodgers acquired Mookie Betts from the Boston Red Sox last year, they added one of the best all-around players to an already talented roster. Not only is he one of the league’s most complete hitters, Betts also provides elite defense in the outfield.

Betts has mostly played right field during his time with the Dodgers but additionally can be penciled in at other positions, including second base. He was drafted as a second baseman before converting to the outfield, and played three innings at the position last season.

Betts has already surpassed that total this year by starting at second base in three consecutive games before returning to right field for the Freeway Series opener last week. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts hinted at the possibility as a means of easing him back from hip trouble.

“It’s less running,” Betts said of playing second base. “I think you forget the run to the outfield, running on the bases, it’s just a lot of running and the amount kind of adds up. It’s a shorter run to second base, so I’m just trying to take less steps.”

With Trea Turner back from the COVID-19 injured list, he is expected to receive the majority of starts at second base going forward. However, there may still be room for Betts to get occasional playing time at the position.

“I think when Corey gets an off day and we slide Trea over to short, we can move Mookie into second base,” Roberts said. “When Trea has an off day, we can slide Mookie into second base. Now you also layer in certain days were Mookie will be down himself (for rest).”

Betts playing through significant hip injury

It’s no secret that Betts’ hip injury has limited him this season as he recently returned from an IL stint and left last Friday’s matchup against the L.A. Angels early.

Betts reportedly is playing through a significant hip issue that would prompt most to miss the remainder of the season.

“I think it’s something that as we look out we’re probably going to have to manage it a lot,” Roberts said. “Ideally we wouldn’t. Our reality is it’s something that’s not going to go away.

“Mookie is doing what he can to give us innings out there defensively, give us at-bats, play with a governor on, so we’ve just got to manage him. Fortunately, we’ve got a lot of good players that can help support.”

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