Opinion of Kingman's Performance

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

On Van Slyke...

The 2013 Dodgers season has had its share of heroes.  The latest being Scott Van Slyke who homered in the 11th inning last night to move the Dodgers several strides closer to the clinching finish line.

Scott Van Slyke hits his first walk off

Van Slyke has been chronicled on a few other blogs, (Tony Jackson at Dodgerscribe.com spelled it out best HERE), so there's no need to re-hash in detail the heroics of the much traveled Dodger outfielder this year.  It's safe to say though that his story is quite amazing.  Seven homers and 18 RBI, with a .259 BA over 123 plate appearances along with 9 trips to the minor leagues this year is quite the feat.  Especially when you consider the dozens of uncomfortable flights Scott has had to take to such scenic places as Fresno, Oklahoma City, Round Rock and Tucson.

It's was quite the comeback within the organization that Van Slyke made after being removed from the 40 man roster back in December.  Any team could have scooped him off the scrap heap and the Dodgers wouldn't have offered a whimper of protest, but it didn't happen.  Scott showed up at Camelback Ranch in fantastic shape and with a positive attitude.

How many players would have sulked their way back to the minors?  And even after Van Slyke had a great spring and was still sent to Albuquerque, he simply went down and tore up the Pacific Coast League, earning himself back on the 40-man roster and into the major leagues again.

With seven home runs over 108 ABs, he has a .064 home run ratio, which is pretty darn good.  So good in fact that if he kept it up over a full season, he'd hit 35 homers on the year with decent playing time.  Van Slyke has hit very well this year wherever he has been.  His .479 on base percentage at Albuquerque attests to that.

It's fair to say that Van Slyke received a justifiable reward last night, as he turned up as the hero.  There's no telling what the future will hold for Scott within the Dodger organization with the log jam they have in the outfield.  One thing is certain and that is Van Slyke has nothing more to prove at the AAA level.  In the right organization, he could be a decent everyday big league outfielder. 


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