PHOENIX -- Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said the starting shortstop job remains Jimmy Rollins' despite a strong push from 21-year old rookie Corey Seager in the past eight games.
Rollins has missed the last four games -- aside from a pinch-running appearance -- with a sore knuckle on his right index finger. Mattingly said he likely won’t bat or field in the last two games of this series. But once he is healthy and ready to return, he will take over the everyday shortstop duties again.
“At this moment, we don’t have any plans. When Jimmy gets back, we plan on playing Jimmy,” Mattingly said.
The question has been bandied about some lately because Rollins is batting .220 with a .634 OPS and Seager has swung a hot bat since he was called up from Triple-A on Sept. 4 in San Diego. He is hitting .385 with a 1.038 OPS. But Rollins is a steadier defender and has the experience of 46 postseason games.
Mattingly said neither president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman nor general manager Farhan Zaidi has weighed in on playing time when Rollins gets healthy.
“I don’t know what the chatter is or if there is chatter about Corey and that position or whatever. He’s going to be really good, and he is really good. At this point, with where we’re at and what’s going on, we don’t plan to change,” Mattingly said. “Andrew and Farhan haven’t come to me and said, 'You’ve got to get him in there every day.'
“The plan always has been to play him some at short and give Jimmy days, give [Justin Turner] days at third. He’s played more than we thought from the standpoint of injuries and he’s done a good job.”
On the other hand, Mattingly said the decision isn’t being made because he would hesitate to play Seager in big games such as those in the playoffs.
“He doesn’t scare me, I’ll tell you that. I’m not afraid to put him out there,” Mattingly said.