Dodgers News: Andrew Friedman Talks Muncy Role, Infield Outlook
Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman says if he “had to guess,” Max Muncy would play third base for LA this year with Miguel Vargas at second.
One of the biggest questions all offseason has been what the Dodgers are going to do in the infield. Freddie Freeman is obviously a lock at first base, and Gavin Lux looks more and more sure to be the starting shortstop. But at second and third base, Los Angeles has a handful of players who could start, and many of them are options at both positions. Max Muncy, Miguel Vargas, Miguel Rojas, Chris Taylor, and Michael Busch could all compete for playing time in the infield.
Andrew Friedman was on SiriusXM over the weekend and talked about a wide variety of topics, including how those last two infield spots might shake out.
Friedman’s exact quote became available later when MLB posted a video of his comments.
“Lux at short, if I had to guess right now, with Muncy at third and Vargy at second. But we’re gonna let spring training play out and not go in with firm thoughts on exactly how it shakes out. We feel really good about the group we have and the flexibility and the versatility that they bring.”
With the shift being banned this year, second base becomes a more challenging defensive position. Vargas is an excellent athlete, but spring training will be the time to see if he has the range to be a solid second baseman. There have been concerns about his footwork at third base, but the footwork at second is quite a bit different. We really won’t know until we see him in action how the defense is going to be.
Muncy, on the other hand, made the All-Star team as a second baseman a few years ago and had also turned himself into one of the best defensive first basemen in baseball before LA signed Freeman. But with his build and foot speed, it’s questionable how well he’d be able to hold down second without the shift. Like Vargas, we wouldn’t know until we saw it in action, but that’s likely why the thinking has Muncy at third.
In a way, it makes the prospect of spring training even more exciting, In many years, we’re excited for the start of spring and then bore with the exhibition games pretty quickly. This year, with so many questions to be answered in both the infield and the outfield, there will be meaningful baseball played even in those exhibitions.