Looking to kickstart a struggling offense, Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts switched Trea Turner and Mookie Betts in the batting order for Thursday’s series finale against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Turner, who had batted in the leadoff spot since joining the Dodgers, hit third, which allowed Betts to return to the top of the lineup for the first time in over a month.
The change did not have an effect as the club mustered only four hits in a 2-1 loss at Busch Stadium. However, that can be partly attributed to several reserves also being in the lineup that day.
Betts and Turner were back in the Nos. 1 and 3 spots, respectively, for Friday’s series opener against the San Diego Padres. Though the Dodgers lineup only produced four hits, they still earned a 3-0 win at Dodger Stadium.
Despite not yet getting the results they hoped for, the plan going forward is for Betts to remain in the leadoff spot, with Turner continuing to bat third.
“We’re going to stay with that for a while,” Roberts said. “It’s nothing that has to be set in stone, but we’re going to give it a run.
“I like the way that Mookie sees more pitches. His DNA is to get on base, and that dynamic of getting on base sets it up for everyone else in the order. Trea is much more a free swinger, gets on base by way of getting hits. So that kind of bat to ball, doubles, some homers, will create some run production from him.”
Since reprising his role as the Dodgers’ leadoff man, Betts has reached base four times in eight plate appearances with two runs scored. As for Turner, he has collected two hits in nine at-bats with one RBI.
Roberts explains decision to switch Turner and Betts in Dodgers lineup
Earlier this week, Roberts explained that the decision to flip-flop Turner and Betts in the lineup was necessary due to the Dodgers’ recent inability to sustain any sort of consistency on offense.
“I think with where we’re at and how we’ve performed, giving a different look, but again it’s the collective offensive unit that needs to get better,” Roberts said.
“Whether I flip two guys, up and down the lineup we’ve got to continue to take good at-bats and put some runs on the board.”
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