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The Dodgers Opening Day lineup announced — Yasiel Puig leading off

Mar 21, 2014, 11:49 AM EDT

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Don Mattingly said he’d do it, and he has. Here’s the Dodgers Opening Day lineup, featuring Yasiel Puig in the leadoff slot:

1. Yasiel Puig RF
2. Justin Turner 2B
3. Hanley Ramirez SS
4. Adrian Gonzalez 1B
5. Scott Van Slyke LF
6. Juan Uribe 3B
7. Andre Ethier CF
8. A.J. Ellis C
9. Clayton Kershaw P

Of course Puig batted leadoff a good bit last season. When he did, he hit better than he did in other lineup slots, if that means anything. Bonus lineup fact: Don Mattingly is compelled by the Rule of National League Managers to bat his second baseman second. Seriously: it’s a more immutable natural law than Thermodynamics and stuff.

  1. El Bravo - Mar 21, 2014 at 11:55 AM

    I also see that Matt Kemp is in his usual spot as well.

    • baberuthslegs - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:03 PM

      Eight years, $160 million.

      • NatsLady - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:39 PM

        Jayson Werth may have discovered cosmic inflation in his spare time, but at least he’s playing baseball. At least, for now. (no jinx, no jinx, no jinx, no jinx).

    • alwaysaharley33 - Mar 21, 2014 at 2:32 PM

      GET OFF MATT !!!!!

      • baberuthslegs - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:01 PM

        I love Matt. He’s an amazing player. MVP type player. I just regret that teams shell out this kind of money for 8 years hoping they guy won’t go down with injuries or flame out.

    • lanflfan - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:43 PM

      Prior to the shoulder injury, Matt Kemp had a (small) ironman streak going. His ankle injury is probably avoided by actually hustling on the play.

      I am 100% OK with Matt Kemp NOT going to Australia, and also good with him staying in the minors for most of or all of April. But if we are still having this “discussion” in June or later, or because of another stupid injury, then you have to seriously question his glass jaw status.

    • notsofast10 - Mar 21, 2014 at 8:46 PM

      Last year was a year of injuries for MK. What did he do his whole career prior?

  2. cur'68 - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:05 PM

    I see Clayton Kershaw will attempt to wield a bat. That should sell the game over seas.

    • El Bravo - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:21 PM

      Thank Dingo for that.

    • deep64blue - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:26 PM

      It’s fine we’re used to bowlers batting :-)

      • theebbandflow - Mar 21, 2014 at 5:47 PM

        hahaha perfect comeback.

    • stlouis1baseball - Mar 21, 2014 at 2:20 PM

      He’s actually a pretty decent hitter.

    • lanflfan - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:47 PM

      Kershaw is a pretty good hitter and went yard on the giants last Opening Day. And he threw a four-hit shutout, first time that was done (hit HR and throw shutout) on Opening Day since Bob Lemon in 1953.

      • cur'68 - Mar 21, 2014 at 5:36 PM

        I actually know this. He’s kind of the Wily Mo Peña of hitting pitchers. Still, wouldn’t Australia rather see the likes of David Ortiz standing there? Of course they would.

  3. bubbalynch - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:18 PM

    Kershaw did throw a complete game shut out and hit a homerun on opening day last year, I may add!

  4. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:21 PM

    Are the stadium concession stands using red Solo cups for the occasion? Amurica!!

  5. clydeserra - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:53 PM

    that is the line up of a $250M team?

    • spudchukar - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      My sentiments exactly.

    • yahmule - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:11 PM

      Pretty sad. By June 1st, we’ll probably see Alex Guerrero and Joc Pederson (vs RHP) in the lineup. Maybe quite a bit sooner.

    • lanflfan - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:51 PM

      Said lineup is missing:
      *Carl Crawford (wife about to give birth)

      *Matt Kemp (did not travel Down Under and likely to spend most of April in AAA)

      *Alexander Guerrero (going to start in AAA, probably time to get used to US baseball and get into proper shape)

    • Professor Fate - Mar 21, 2014 at 6:23 PM

      You yahoos always sound like it’s your money they’re spending.

      • clydeserra - Mar 21, 2014 at 10:28 PM

        so, I can only enjoy baseball your way? Fk that.

  6. yahmule - Mar 21, 2014 at 12:56 PM

    Justin Turner starting @ second base confirms that Alex Guerrero’s pending undeserved demotion had nothing to do with Dee Gordon’s “hot spring” and everything to do with Don Mattingly feeling the need to show everybody he’s in charge. A month of watching Dee and this journeyman getting the bat knocked out of their hands should be enough. Then Guerrero will be recalled and he’ll likely hit more homers than any NL second baseman besides Gyorko and Hill. Guerrero’s supposed defensive struggles have manifested themselves in zero errors and an increasing comfort level at the position. Too bad getting this outstanding hitter ready for the season wasn’t Don’s priority. Extending this petulant jackass was such a mistake.

    • spudchukar - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:12 PM

      Errors are a sorry excuse for determining a defender. The Dodgers are convinced he isn’t ready to handle the second base job. Guerrerro may have power, but hasn’t been able to much else.

      • yahmule - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:54 PM

        He’s handling all aspects of the position just fine. He was also as competent a defensive shortstop in Cuba than Gordon or Hanley or pretty much anybody the Dodgers have had there since 38 year old Mark Belanger gave them 54 games in 1982. Only really gullible and stupid people swallow every word baseball teams tell them.

      • spudchukar - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:03 PM

        Unfortunately for Guerrero he isn’t playing in Havana, but Los Angeles, and he isn’t a Big League second baseman, and the idea that he could play SS is risible.

    • kingscourt25 - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:51 PM

      Guerrero hit did well in ST. They’re sending him to Triple A because he’s rusty and hasn’t played pro baseball in a year.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Mar 21, 2014 at 5:08 PM

      Guerrero hasn’t played in a year and is brand spanking new at 2nd. This has nothing to do with Mattingly and everything to do with logic.

    • cur'68 - Mar 21, 2014 at 5:46 PM

      ‘Mulie, hang in there. Guerrero’s gonna be on the big club again well before the AS break. All he has to do is precisely what he has been doing. The kid can play, he’s just gotta show them that he’s no sample size blip. I’m not a big Mattingly fan, but he won’t let the team suffer for his ego. He could be full of himself but he ain’t nuts. The Dodgers have enough going forward to be fine until Guerrero’s play out shines anything Dee Gordon or Justin Turner could do. The Dodgers have the potential to get stronger over the season as they call up Peña then Kemp. Not many teams have that going forward.

      • yahmule - Mar 21, 2014 at 7:57 PM

        Mattingly is very insecure about his status in LA, so he’s always doing this kind of crap. Installing Guerra and League as closer the last two years over Kenley Jansen is another example. The poor guy goes in for heart surgery and gets his job yanked away the second time.

    • CyclePower - Mar 22, 2014 at 10:15 AM

      You make absolutely no sense. This is exactly what they did with Yasiel Puig last year. He’s a rookie. He needs time to develop his professional game and adapt to a new environment before he’s thrust into the spotlight. The decision is not a very controversial one and was likely made by, not just Mattingly, but the organization.

  7. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:07 PM

    For a bazillion-dollar ball club, this lineup looks rather unimposing.

    • kingscourt25 - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:50 PM

      Going off of OPS+ from last season, that’s an above average line-up. And of course, this line-up doesn’t include the injured Matt Kemp, Carl Crawford, and Alex Guerrero.

  8. bat42boy - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:38 PM

    What happened to the starting lineup of the team they are playing?? There are other teams than the Dodgers, Yankees and Red Sox. Let’s start reporting about of all MLB than a select few who need no publicity.

    • yahmule - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:56 PM

      The Diamondback storyline is on hold until a proper grit angle can be attached.

    • asimonetti88 - Mar 21, 2014 at 5:05 PM

      I just checked the Diamondbacks’ website, it does not appear they’ve announced their Opening Day lineup yet.

  9. Carl Hancock - Mar 21, 2014 at 1:59 PM

    I haven’t followed the Dodgers that closely but this is their opening day lineup? I know pitching wins but even they got out pitched in the NLCS so of this is the type of lineup they’re going to field this season should be an adventure for them for sure. One in which Puig’s antics won’t be overlooked so easily. Which they won’t be if the team is losing.

    • kingscourt25 - Mar 21, 2014 at 2:23 PM

      These games count, but this isn’t really an opening day for them. They left quite a few players back in Arizona and they’ve made it clear they don’t care about this series too much.

      • clydeserra - Mar 21, 2014 at 4:08 PM

        so what? their job is to be my entertainment. I don’t care what they do or don’t like.

        Besides, the last week of spring training is essentially useless giveaways to the FLA and AZ tourism industry.

    • lanflfan - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:53 PM

      As I said above, lineup is missing Matt Kemp, Carl Crawford and Alex Guerrero.

  10. unclemosesgreen - Mar 21, 2014 at 2:23 PM

    Of course Puig should lead off, guy goes 120 mph. He’s da bessss

  11. mutasian - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:22 PM

    matt kemp must be very hurt…

    • lanflfan - Mar 21, 2014 at 3:54 PM

      From what I have read, Matt Kemp is at or ahead of schedule but there was never any thought of him going to Australia. He will likely start the season in AAA.

  12. koufaxmitzvah - Mar 21, 2014 at 5:11 PM

    Yes, this is the opening day starting lineup…. with Opening Day taking place in Australia and about 10 days before everyone else begins their season.

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