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Dodgers designated hitters are thriving

Nine different players have started at DH at least twice this year for LA

Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers
Dave Roberts penciled in Corey Seager at designated hitter on Friday night against the Rockies.
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Corey Seager starts at designated hitter on Friday night for the Dodgers against the Rockies at Dodger Stadium, the latest position player to rotate through the position.

This is Seager’s seventh start at DH this season, tying him with A.J. Pollock for most at the position, one behind Joc Pederson. Those two start in center and left field, respectively on Friday.

Dodgers-Rockies lineups

Pos Rockies Pos Dodgers
Pos Rockies Pos Dodgers
DH Tapia (L) RF Betts
SS Story DH Seager (L)
3B Arenado 3B Muncy (L)
RF Blackmon (L) 1B Bellinger (L)
CF Pillar CF Pollock
1B Murphy (L) DH Pederson (L)
2B Hampson SS Taylor
LF Hilliard (L) C Smith
C Wolters (L) 2B Lux (L)
Dustin May vs. Antonio Senzatela on the mound

Nine different Dodgers have started at DH this season, and the group as a whole is hitting .286/.389/.507 with seven home runs, one more than the franchise hit in the first 23 years of interleague play. Their 146 wRC+ at DH ranks fourth in the majors, trailing only the Twins, Indians, and Cardinals.

Though a fan of what he has termed National League-style baseball, manager Dave Roberts has grown accustomed to having a designated hitter in every game rather than just occasionally. I guess having that stellar production at his disposal helps.

“I love it. I didn’t think I would appreciate it as much as I do. Just getting guys more at-bats, getting the position players involved,” Roberts said on a conference call. “I actually in particular like it because we have guys that can really defend. The DH is essentially used as a day to get off your legs, but still take some at bats. It’s been really good for us.”

Only once this season have the Dodgers started the same designated hitter on consecutive days. That was Seager, literally a month ago on Aug. 3-4 in San Diego when he was nursing a quad injury.

Roster move

The Rockies placed starter Jon Gray on the injured list Friday with right shoulder inflammation, and recalled right-hander Jose Mujica from the club’s alternate training site.