June 23, 2021

National League West X factors for 2020 (Baseball Essential)

What players can move the needle for their respective teams in the 2020 Major League Baseball season? Here are X factors for every team in the National League West.

Los Angeles Dodgers: Julio Urias

Clayton Kershaw hasn’t made 30 starts in a season since 2015; David Price is a guessing game; Ross Stripling is a steady force but never seems to have a set-in-stone role. Case in point: it’s an enigma what manager Dave Roberts is getting from those not named Walker Buehler in his starting rotation. Urias could be a game changer for L.A.

Whether it be injury, inconsistency, or a suspension, Urias has been unable to get into a groove at the big-league level. He also hasn’t pitched a full season at said level. Fortunately for the Dodgers’ sake, he’s still 23. Urias gets considerable movement on his off-speed pitches and has exhibited glimpses of brilliance. The southpaw seems to be a likely fixture in the team’s 2020 rotation.

The Dodgers losing Hyun-Jin Ryu to free agency has been undermined. Yes, he has dealt with recurring injuries, but, when healthy, he was arguably their best starter, and last season he was a finalist for the NL Cy Young Award. Without someone stepping up…

Read “National League West X factors for 2020” at Baseball Essential