Dodgers Trying To ‘Figure Out’ Struggles Against Left-Handed Pitching
Chris Taylor
Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

In what appears to be a never-ending cycle for the Los Angeles Dodgers, the team is once again struggling to hit left-handed pitching.

The Dodgers previously made moves to address the issue in 2018 when they traded for Brian Dozier and 2019 with the signing of AJ Pollock. However, the trend continued into 2020 but the Dodgers were able to overcome it to win the World Series.

This season, the Dodgers acquired Albert Pujols to help fix their woes against southpaws. While Pujols has performed better than anyone could have hoped with a 219 wRC+ against lefties, the team is still struggling to consistently hit against left-handers.

“That’s real. We’re aware of it and kind of trying to figure it out. If you look at guys’ track records, they have hit left-handed pitching,” manager Dave Roberts recently said.

“That doesn’t mean they, are clearly, but we’re still trying to work on it. We’ve got to figure it out.”

So far, the Dodgers are hitting .224 against left-handers, which places them 24th in the league, and they have been around below league average in on-base percentage (.313), slugging percentage (.390) OPS (.712) and wRC+ (97).

They have performed even worse when only looking at their numbers against left-handed starting pitchers. Versus southpaw starters, the Dodgers are hitting .215/.309/.366 in 754 plate appearances.

Surprisingly, the L.A. ranks fourth in hard-hit percentage against southpaws, making hard contact on nearly 35% of their balls in play. With a batting average on balls in play that ranks near the bottom of the league at .267, the Dodgers should be able to expect their luck to turn around a bit.

Getting Corey Seager back in the lineup would also be a massive step in the right direction and he should begin a rehab assignment soon. Against left-handers this year, Seager is hitting .296/.345/.481 with a 132 wRC+. Gavin Lux, who has filled in for Seager, has struggled against southpaws with a .154/.262/.192 batting line.

While the Dodgers will likely start hitting left-handers better moving forward, the team should still look to acquire a right-handed bat before the trade deadline.

Dodgers on the right side

Against right-handers this season, the Dodgers have been the second-best offense in baseball, hitting .252/.351/.420 with a 119 wRC+ in 1,800 plate appearances.

Funny enough, they have made less hard contact against righties at 32.8%, placing them 12th in the league.

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