ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Kiké Hernandez will be the Dodgers’ designated hitter for the opener of their two-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Hernandez is leading off against left-hander Matt Moore. Joc Pederson is starting in center field — just like Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said last week — and shortstop Corey Seager is getting the day off in favor of Charlie Culberson. Pederson and Adrian Gonzalez are the only left-handers in the lineup for the 4 p.m. (PT) interleague game.
Here are the full lineups for both teams:
When is a platoon not a platoon?
Answer: When you’re Dave Roberts and you’ve started right-handed hitter Trayce Thompson in center field five times, against a left-handed starter each time, and left-handed hitter Joc Pederson has started every other game — all against right-handed pitchers.
Roberts had an opportunity to clarify the arrangement Wednesday, when Thompson got his sixth start of the season against Miami Marlins left-hander Justin Nicolino.
Joc Pederson followed his poor game Saturday with a great one Sunday, giving the Dodgers a series win and putting his off-season hitting work into sharp focus. The box score is here.
Sunday’s game was the first this season that wasn’t blacked out to non-TWC/Charter subscribers in Southern California. The Dodgers’ TV deal might create a lost generation of young fans, writes David Montero.