Andy LaRoche is spending time at first base now, which I don’t see any reason for other than they needed a guy with Terry Tiffee like versatility on the Suns. With Blake DeWitt locking down the third base job for the near future and possibly beyond, the Dodgers need to find a position for LaRoche to play. Second base seems like the most logical destination which has Chin Lung Hu as the penciled in guy for 2009 and Orlando Hudson and Mark Ellis as the likely 75 million dollar busts that could come from the market.
What we don’t need is LaRoche taking grounders at first. James Loney starts more than any other player on the Dodgers and presumably has the position locked down for a while. Even if the Dodgers aren’t happy with him, the best position player headed for free agency this year, Mark Teixeira, also plays first and could take over the position well into 2015 or so. If the plan is to DFA Sweeney and use LaRoche as his backup, then why not just do that to begin with instead of calling up Tiffee? Unless we want him to spend months learning the position, I don’t know how much these games would really matter.
Offensively, there’s nothing much else LaRoche can learn in AAA. If we’re going to keep him down there, he should be trying to learn a position that can really help the team in the future, not just something that will only be useful from now until Nomar gets healthy.