Should Los Angeles Dodgers Start Andre Ethier or Carl Crawford?


In the Los Angeles organization we are seeing a duel for the starting position in left field between Andre Ethier and Carl Crawford. This duel has brought up the question as to who should start, but we aren’t Don Mattingly, so we don’t have all the information he has regarding his players.

Though we do not possess the first hand experiences that Mattingly has had with his players, we can examine their stats both in the pre-season and in the regular season.

Crawford holds a career pre-season AVG. of .292 with 1868 hits, 132 of those being home runs. Ethier holds a career pre-season AVG. of .285 with 1238 hits, 145 of those being home runs. We can deduce that though Crawford has a better AVG., it is evident that Ethier is more of a power-hitter.

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What the Dodgers need is someone who will produce the best on the field with their hitting and their fielding. They also must consider speed being that either Crawford or Ethier will most likely be in the two-spot of the lineup.

Many fans think that Crawford will be a better fit for the Dodgers because he has more hits and a better AVG. This is only one of the factors that Mattingly has to consider before a decision is made for Opening Day on April 6.

This struggle for the starting position is a sort of recap from last year when the Dodgers management had to make that tough call. From my analysis and review of stats and current news, my prediction is as follows:

  • Carl Crawford: Left-field
  • Andre Ethier: Center-field
  • Yasiel Puig: Right-field

Who will start?

My prediction is one that puts, in my opinion, the strongest Dodgers outfield. The only thing that will tell is when the season starts and Mattingly passes in his lineup at the home-plate meeting. Both Dodgers outfielders have huge contracts and both players are veterans, so this is likely one of the factors that may lead Mattingly to start them over other players.

With this outfield, the Dodgers will be unstoppable in their defense, because they all possess speed, arm-strength, and agility.

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  • We must also consider another player, Joc Pederson, who is looking hot, but doesn’t have the experience that Crawford or Ethier have. He currently holds a pre-season AVG. of .368, which is very impressive, but in most cases, stats are not the only deciding factor. writer Ken Gurnick stated that “Meanwhile, Andre Ethier went 0-for-4 as a designated hitter, but his average is still .304, while Carl Crawford has struggled all spring (.216), leading to speculation that Crawford could be the odd man out on Opening Day.”

    This could be an opening for Pederson to show his outfield skill and beat out either Crawford or Ethier with his bat in the lineup. He would be a great addition to the Dodgers lineup and outfield, but this is a tough decision because Dodger fans love Ethier and Crawford, so changing that could cause some controversy.

    In addition, Pederson is young and he will have the rookie nerves that the Dodgers don’t need. They need to come out strong in order to build a solid foundation for the latter part of the season.

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    There is no way that we can be sure what factors Mattingly will consider when he makes this decision, but I know this is going to be a tough one for him.

    We will be able to see though, on Saturday the 4th when the Dodgers face off with the Angels in the freeway series. This game will be one of the factors that will help lead to Mattingly’s decision because this game is their last game before the official season starts on Monday.

    By that time, with Clayton Kershaw pitching, the Dodgers will need to put their best outfield behind him because a pitcher needs his defense behind him. It’s also one of the traits of a championship team– to have a solid defense backed with a stacked lineup of great hitters. Los Angeles is among the Spring leaders in home runs.

    We know that our Dodgers will put their best on the field and their best in the lineup, so we hope that Mattingly makes a swift decision with wise judgement.