Los Angeles Dodgers

 

2005 Record: 71-91. 4th in division.

Anticipated Opening Day Roster:

 

Lineup

1-Kenny Lofton-OF

2-Rafael Furcal-SS

3-Nomar Garciaparra-1B

4-Jeff Kent-2B

5-JD Drew[ii]-OF

6-Bill Mueller-3B

7-Jose Cruz-OF

8-Dioner Navarro-C

Starting Rotation

1-Derek Lowe-R

2-Brad Penny-R

3-Odalis Perez-L

4-Jae Seo-R

5-Brett Tomko-R

Bullpen

Eric Gagne[i]-Closer

Danny Baez-R-Set up man

Hong-Chih Kuo- Lefty Special

Duanar Sanchez-R

Franquelis Osoria-R

Kelly Wunsch-L

                                               

Utility: Olmedo Saenz INF, Hee-Seop Choi 1B, Ricky Ledee OF, Jason Worth OF, Sandy Alomar JR C.

 

25th man contenders: Greg Miller LHP, Tim Hamulack LHP, Yhency Brazabon RHP, Aaron Sele RHP, Lance Carter RHP, Cesar Izturis INF, Oscar Robles 3B, Willy Aybar 2B

 

Departures: Milton Bradley OF, Jeff Weaver SP, Elmer Dessens RP, Giovani Carrara RP

 

Additions: Nomar Garciaparra 1B/SS, Kenny Lofton OF,  Rafael Furcal SS, Bill Mueller 3B, Brett Tomko SP, Lance Carter RP, Danny Baez RP.

 

Strengths: Milton is gone. Starting pitching depth will allow the Dodgers to maneuver with a deep bench and allow Grady Little and Ned Colletti to effectively maximize the potential of the often-underachieving Dodgers. A proven lineup, with post season experience: Garciaparra, Kent and Drew are a formidable threesome at the heart of the lineup coupled with Lofton and Furcal who know how to set the table, could lead to a long summer for opposing pitchers.

 

Weaknesses: Lack of bullpen depth under Gagne and Baez will be a big problem; the Dodgers are expected to go with an 11 man pitching staff. Grady Little left Boston under attack, the National League calls for a bigger stage for managers, and in the concrete jungle of Los Angeles the media is trained to swarm at the first sign of perspiration.. Is Gagne fully healthy?  Can Lofton still walk? Has Kent found a car wash? Does Drew know the quickest route to the hospital? Will Nomar be able to find first base?

 

Foreseen variables: The Dodgers will try to solidify the bullpen through a trade before the all-star break, especially if the team doesnít get off to a hot start or Gagne isnít dominating. Darren Dreifort, then Edwin Jackson, what will 2006 have in store?

 

2006 Projection: 3rd in the division. The wildcard should come from the West and the Dodgers will challenge for it.


 

[i]   Eric Gagne- said "I felt great, Iím pain freeĒ clocked at a high of 92 mph March 11th

[ii]  JD Drew- Had shoulder and wrist surgery in off-season, says he is fully healthy.