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Los Angeles Dodgers

Dodgers’ Dave Roberts Benches Cody Bellinger

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The Los Angeles Dodgers are trying anything to turn around their slow start to the 2018 season and manager Dave Roberts has taken to benching last year’s rookie of the year as a method to shake things up.

During that Dodgers loss to the San Francisco Giants on Sunday, Roberts pilled Bellinger in the fifth inning for what what Roberts saw as a lack of hustle.

“I felt there wasn’t hustle on the play — the ball that he hit 421 feet into right-center field, and he cruised into second base,” Roberts said (h/t ESPN).

“He plays every day, and there’s certain expectations for the way we have to play the game. When you don’t abide by that, we’ll get somebody in there that will. It’s pretty simple.”

Bellinger said that he was unaware of the reason for the benching.

“I got in the dugout, and he said I was out of the game,” Bellinger stated. “I didn’t know any reason. Just put on my jacket, went up to the railing and watched the game. I’ve always played the game hard. I kind of took a big swing on the curveball, ended up on my knee. We’re down four runs. I’m not trying to make an out on the bases going to third. He saw what he saw. It’s all good. I’m never going to dog that. Obviously, it’s ‘Triples Alley.’ That’s what they call it. We’re down four. … That was my reasoning. … It was his decision. I can’t say anything against it.”

Roberts could simply be sending a message, which would make sense with their 12-15 record and being 7 games back of the Arizona Diamondbacks in the division.

“Yeah, it could have been,” Bellinger said. “Like I said, I’m always hustling to beat out ground balls. I feel like I’m always hustling. I don’t know — it just kind of didn’t make sense to me. But I get it as well. He’s trying to prove a point. Being the young guy, I got to hustle.”

Los Angeles Dodgers

Dodgers Talk with Bryce Harper

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The Los Angeles Dodgers are officially back in the Bryce Harper sweepstakes as Harper’s negotiations with the Philadelphia Phillies continue to stall.

According to MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez, the Dodgers have found their way “back in the mix” for Harper, with Dodgers manager Dave Roberts among a contingent who went to Las Vegas on Saturday to meet with Harper.

While Harper is eyeing a long-term contract, the Dodgers may be angling with a short-term deal, which makes their involvement, and Harper’s engaging with them, interesting.

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Atlanta Braves

Padres, Dodgers, Reds, Braves, Rays in “Advanced Stages” for Marlins’ J.T. Realmuto

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The Miami Marlins may be closing in on a deal to deal catcher J.T. Realmuto as several teams are considered to be in “advanced stages” in talks about a trade, according to MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro.

The report goes on to say that the Cincinnati Reds are in “substantive” talks with the Marlins.

Other teams linked to the deep talks are the San Diego Padres, Atlanta Braves, Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Tampa Bay Rays.

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Los Angeles Dodgers

Dodgers Discussed Joc Pederson with Teams

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The Los Angeles Dodgers have discussed trade scenarios involving outfielder Joc Pederson with a number of teams, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal.

Among the teams that have talked with the Dodgers include the Chicago White Sox, and the Atlanta Braves, among others.

Pederson, 26, could be dealt to create room in the outfield for an outside addition, such as A.J. Pollock, who the Dodgers have been linked to this offseason.

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