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2014 Outlook: Los Angeles Dodgers

Jan 19, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

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2013 record: 92-70, 1st place in NL West
Manager: Don Mattingly, 4th season
Estimated 2014 payroll: $230 million
Key additions: 2B Alexander Guerrero, RHP Dan Haren, RHP Chris Perez
Key losses: 2B Mark Ellis, INF Nick Punto, RHP Ricky Nolasco, RHP Edinson Volquez

Projected lineup
LF Carl Crawford
RF Yasiel Puig
SS Hanley Ramirez
1B Adrian Gonzalez
CF Matt Kemp
3B Juan Uribe
C A.J. Ellis
2B Alexander Guerrero

Projected rotation
LHP Clayton Kershaw
RHP Zack Greinke
LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu
RHP Josh Beckett
RHP Dan Haren

Top relievers
CL Kenley Jansen
RHP Brian Wilson
RHP Chris Perez

Biggest questions entering 2014
1. Is Matt Kemp healthy? If healthy, Kemp is one of the best all-around players in baseball. But he wasn’t healthy at all in 2013, appearing in only 73 games due to shoulder and ankle injuries. Kemp hopes to be 100 percent for spring training, but there’s still no guarantee. The Dodgers have four outfielders (Kemp, Puig, Crawford, Andre Ethier) and only three starting jobs. But before they can proceed, they need to know if Kemp is capable of playing every day.

2. Will Dan Haren return to form on the West Coast? Last year was a disaster for Haren, who was awful in his only season with the Nationals. He admitted how tough it was to pitch on the East Coast for the first time in his career, so this winter he signed with the Dodgers, giving him a chance to return home and stay close to his family. Will that result in a return to his previous career norms, or is Haren simply finished?

3. Can Yasiel Puig stay out of trouble? There was no more electrifying player in baseball last season than Puig, and there was no more controversial player in baseball last season than Puig. There’s no denying his talent, nor his flair for the dramatic. The Dodgers, though, have spent far too much time trying to rein in the charismatic (possibly immature) outfielder. Puig’s focus, and the Dodgers’ focus, needs to be on the field. Will that be possible?

  1. Sonny G 10 - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:59 PM

    Can Stan Kasten invite the Philthy Phans to take over Dodger stadium? :)

  2. Section 222 - Jan 19, 2014 at 9:47 PM

    The Dodgers are the new Yankees. Pretty much unlimited resources. Lucky Stan. It remains to be seen whether they use their money wisely (getting Puig, extending Kershaw) or foolishly (Haren).

    One funny thing has been to hear the MLB Network guys say how powerful the Dodgers’ starting rotation is 1-5. Kershaw, Greinke, Ryu, Nolasco (Beckett?), and Haren. They all think Haren will be great based on his second half with us. I’m skeptical to say the least.

    • David Proctor - Jan 19, 2014 at 10:20 PM

      Nolasco is a Twin now. So it’s Kershaw, Greinke, Ryu, Haren and TBD.

      • Sonny G 10 - Jan 20, 2014 at 12:33 AM

        Ah Ha! When Haren blows up like he did for us last year, their rotation might not be so great.

      • Faraz Shaikh - Jan 20, 2014 at 9:44 AM

        they have Chad ready to join them in May I think. Right now, beckett is probably #5. they are also in play for tanaka I believe.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 73 54 --
ATLANTA 68 61 6.0
MIAMI 64 63 9.0
NEW YORK 60 69 14.0
PHILADELPHIA 57 71 17.5
Through Friday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
SAT: Giants at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Giants at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Nats at Phillies, 7:05 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Phillies, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Nats at Phillies, 7:05 p.m.
THU: OFF
FRI: Nats at Mariners, 10:10 p.m.
Full season schedule

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

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