Dodgers not yet committed to Gavin Lux as starting shortstop

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Friday, March 8, 2024

Gavin Lux will need to show more progress to continue his expected trajectory toward becoming the Los Angeles Dodgers' every-day shortstop this season.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Thursday that he has not committed to Lux, 26, becoming the regular starter just yet.

"I don't know," Roberts said when asked about Lux taking over the job, adding that "performance matters."

Lux was supposed to take over the starting shortstop role last season after Trea Turner departed as a free agent. But a knee injury in spring training cost Lux the entire 2023 season.

Healthy again, Lux is raising concerns about his defense. He made errors on the first two ground balls hit to him this spring.

He also is showing issues throwing the ball on target to first base after doing the same when playing at second base in recent seasons.

"I think we just have to understand that it still takes time to get back up to major league speed and feel that once the bell rings that it'll be there where it needs to be," Roberts said about Lux earlier this week, according to the Orange County Register.

Lux is batting .348 in eight spring training games with three walks that have helped him to a .423 on-base percentage. But there is no opportunity for him to see time at designated hitter becauseShohei Ohtaniis slotted there this season.

Veteran Miguel Rojas took over at shortstop last season for the Dodgers, and while his offensive contributions were limited, his above-average defense was key in helping Los Angeles to 100 regular-season victories and a spot in the playoffs.

The Dodgers don't have much time to decide on a shortstop for Opening Day. Los Angeles opens the regular season March 20 against the San Diego Padres in South Korea.