|Photo by Gary Vasquez/US Presswire|
Numerous sources, (tweets from Dylan Hernandez, Eric Stephen, Dustin Nosler) are claiming that Mark Ellis is going on the Disabled List and Ivan De Jesus Jr. is on his way up to the big club. The loss of Ellis and his steady glove at second base may be the most damaging injury news to this Dodger club that is slowly turning into a MASH unit.
I won’t dare say that his loss to the team is on the level of Matt Kemp, but it is no doubt a great loss due to his veteran presence and professionalism. Mark has played 34 games and 304 innings of errorless baseball at one of the most demanding positions on the field. He’s no slouch with his range and is as steady as any second baseman in the game. We will notice his absence. Every ground ball hit to the right side has practically been an automatic out.
Ellis’ .273 BA and .373 OBP is extremely valuable in the no.2 spot. He has silently led this club to their MLB best 26-13 record. I’ll admit that I’m interested in seeing what Ivan De Jesus Jr. can do, but it would be ridiculous of us to expect the rookie to adequately replace Ellis’ production both offensively and defensively.
|Tyler Greene takes out Mark Ellis while breaking up a double play in last night's action. This is the play that lands Ellis on the 15 day disabled list.(Photo by Reed Paxson/AP)|
There’s a reason why Billy Bean valued Ellis so highly for so many years in Oakland. I was skeptical of this pickup in the offseason, mainly due to Mark being 35 years old and his declining numbers last season. But he has come out and proved that he's not done as a valuable contributor. Ellis has time and time again sacrificed his offensive numbers for the benefit of the ball club, hitting behind the runner and producing effective outs. As much as he's done that, his offensive numbers have remained respectable.
So while many of us count the days until Matt Kemp returns to the lineup, (it is 10 days if all goes well). We can add another countdown, June 4th is the date Ellis comes back. It is safe to say that he has emerged as one of the leaders of this Dodger club.
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