Why Don Mattingly Would Be Foolish to Platoon Matt Kemp


Sept. 17, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder

Matt Kemp

celebrates after scoring in the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

After a slow start to his 2013 season, Matt Kemp suffered a hamstring injury. This was not the first time Kemp went on the disabled list, he missed around two months last year with a hamstring injury.

When he got hurt, it created a hole in the Dodgers outfield. Now, however, the Dodgers have 3 good outfielders. The question most fans are asking is who’s going lose playing time. One possibility would be to platoon Kemp and either Carl Crawford or Andre Ethier. This would be a terrible decision by Don Mattingly.

Matt Kemp needs to get as many at bats as he can before the playoffs. He’s played in less than 100 games this year, and didn’t look great when he was on the field earlier in the season. If they can get Kemp on a hot streak, the LA Dodgers will be nearly unstoppable in the playoffs.

But, if Kemp is starting everyday, who will lose playing time? It obviously won’t be Yasiel Puig, so it will either be Ethier or Crawford.  Unfortunately, both Crawford and Ethier struggle against lefties, so they can’t have a normal platoon. Ethier is having an overall better season, so the best move would probably be to start Ethier with Crawford available as a pinch hitter or pinch runner late in games.