The plethora of injuries the Los Angeles Dodgers have absorbed throughout the season has created opportunities that likely would not have presented themselves until active rosters expanded. Andrew Toles has been among the beneficiaries.
The versatile outfielder had his contract purchased from Triple-A Oklahoma City on July 8, and Toles made his Major League debut that evening. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts lauded the 24-year-old for bringing speed to a roster that otherwise lacked it.
But Toles has also proven to be a commodity with the bat. He capped off an improbable ninth-inning comeback at Coors Field with an opposite-field grand slam, and has shown impressive power for his stature.
On Saturday, Toles started in left field and made an impact with his arm to help the Dodgers maintain a two-run lead.
Yasmany Tomas attempted to score from second base on Brandon Drury’s base hit to left field, but Toles fired a strike to the plate to easily nab Tomas and end the inning:
Don't run on Andrew.
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) September 18, 2016
Toles’ start on Saturday was his 18th with the Dodgers and 36th game played overall. He’s batting .346/.400/.580 with eight doubles, one triple, three home runs and 14 RBI.
Roberts said recently that Toles is among the left-handed hitting players vying for a spot on a potential postseason roster. Toles joining the Dodgers for the playoffs would be another remarkable accomplishment for someone who was out of baseball last season.
Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman credited director of player development Gabe Kapler for connecting with Toles during the offseason, which led to the club signing him. Friedman also had previous ties to Toles, selecting him with the Tampa Bay Rays’ third-round pick in the 2012 Draft.