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Dodgers Spring Training: Three takeaways from Wednesday

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Los Angeles Angels v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

Thanks to a six-run eighth inning, the Dodgers defeated the Angels 9-4 on Wednesday. Here are some of the biggest takeaways from the game.

Kenley Jansen looks good

Yes, it’s only Spring Training, so there’s no need to over-analyze things.

However, we do need to talk about the spring that Jansen has had so far. He’s made two appearances, throwing a scoreless inning in each outing. Today, he struck out the side, giving him a total of five strikeouts through two innings this spring.

According to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com, Jansen’s velocity sat at 92-94 mph. This is definitely a positive sign, considering last season his velocity was around the upper 80’s to begin the spring.

Hopefully we can see Jansen get a few more appearances before beginning the 2020 season. He’s coming off the “worst” year of his career, where he finished with a 3.71 ERA. If Jansen can improve and remain healthy, it looks as if the Dodgers will be adding an All-Star closer to the back of their bullpen.

Zach McKinstry is a name to keep an eye on

It might not be a name every Dodgers fan knows, but that might change soon. Though they’ve only played a handful a games, one of the biggest storylines so far has been the play of McKinstry.

A 33rd round pick in 2016, McKinstry has quickly shot through the minors, and is currently on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster. So far this spring, he’s gone 3-for-9. His biggest hit came today, when he gave the Dodgers the lead with a two-run triple.

In 121 games between Tulsa and Oklahoma City last year, McKinstry hit .300 with an OPS of .882. He hit 19 home runs and drove in 78. He also added 24 doubles and six triples.

In addition to a stellar bat, he’s versatile, having played every position last year except for first base and catcher.

“Certain players you have to see play for an extended period of time to really appreciate what they can do,” Dave Roberts said to reporters the other day. “Zach is not going to just wow you when you first see him, but the baseball instincts, understanding how to manage an at-bat, where to be in the right spots, he just doesn’t make mistakes.”

Cody Thomas is the best player on the team named Cody

Well, no. But he’s been the best Cody this spring!

Thomas has been the most electrifying player for the Dodgers so far during the first week. In just six at-bats, Thomas already has two home runs and five RBI.

He welcomed himself to Dodgers fans the other day, hitting an opposite-field home run and then robbing a home run later in the game.

He hit another home run today, and by our estimates, it hasn’t even landed yet.

Roberts called him the MVP of the first week. Here’s what Thomas had to say about his hot start to the spring.