Contact Form

    News Details

    Pitchers have adjusted to Dodgers’ Andy Pages, so it’s his turn to counter
    • May 30, 2024

    NEW YORK — It was a sweet sixteen party for Andy Pages.

    Promoted from Triple-A in mid-April, the Cuban-born outfielder was 22 for 65 (.339) with five doubles, four home runs, 12 RBIs and 14 runs scored in his first 16 major-league games. It was just the spark the Dodgers hoped would bring light to the darkness in the bottom half of their lineup.

    Since then, though, Pages has been reminded that it’s just not that easy.

    In his past 22 games through Wednesday, Pages has gone 12 for 80 (.150) with 31 strikeouts and only three extra-base hits (two doubles and one home run on a hanging slider from Cincinnati Reds right-hander Hunter Greene).

    The more big-league pitchers have gotten to know Pages, the less successful he has been. But the 23-year-old says it’s not them, it’s him.

    “I think they have been pitching me differently,” he said through an interpreter. “But I think it’s more that they see where I’m not making adjustments, where I’m making mistakes. They’re attacking those areas. But I think it’s more me not making the adjustments than what they’re doing to me.”

    Opposing pitchers have been “pitching me in zones that I usually do pretty well in,” Pages said, identifying those as “middle-in, middle-down.”

    “Those are pitches that are usually in my wheelhouse. But I’m missing those pitches and when they’re making mistakes in those zones. I should be able to hit those mistakes and I’m not right now.”

    Mostly, though, pitchers have led Pages outside the most important zone – the strike zone. Pages’ chase rate has increased the longer he has been in the Dodgers’ lineup to the point that he is now swinging at almost 40% of the pitches he sees outside of the strike zone. (The major-league average is 28%.)

    “I see him crowded more, a little bit more crowded,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of pitchers attacking Pages inside more often now. “I think they’re throwing him a lot more balls than strikes, which kind of speaks to his chase rate. There’s only one Vladimir Guerrero (Sr.) that I know – and I don’t think Andy even knows who that is – that could really cover balls outside the zone that well. At some point, you’ve got to cover the strike zone.”

    James Outman was unable to make enough adjustments in his sophomore season and wound up back in Triple-A, opening a spot for Pages. Now it’s Pages’ turn to play the cat-and-mouse game with big-league pitchers.

    Related Articles

    Los Angeles Dodgers |

    Dodgers break out of slump, complete trip with sweep of Mets

    Los Angeles Dodgers |

    Dodgers’ Freddie Freeman hopes he has found his swing

    Los Angeles Dodgers |

    The Audible: On the late Bill Walton, Ty Lue and Dave Roberts

    Los Angeles Dodgers |

    Gavin Stone dominates for 7 innings as Dodgers sweep doubleheader against Mets

    Los Angeles Dodgers |

    Dodgers get solid pitching, enough offense to sweep doubleheader against Mets

    “I think a little bit of it is just, throughout the baseball season, the ebbs and flows of it,” Pages said. “But I think a lot of it has to do with me not hitting the pitches I should be hitting which I’m not.

    “I’ve been fouling off those balls because I’ve been getting under those pitches in that lower zone. So I’ve been trying to get my hands above those balls so that I’m not fouling them off.”

    Roberts praised Pages for his composure, regardless of how things are going, and said he doesn’t see the rookie “pressing.”

    “He’s in a slide,” Roberts said. “There’s more chase. He’s missing some pitches he should hit.  But I just believe in the (level) head. I really do. With a young player it’s hard to imagine things … linear and seamless. It hasn’t been that way. But he hasn’t given up on the defensive side. And I just think there’s more in there. So we’ll keep running him out there.”

    For what it’s worth, Outman has gone 7 for 25 (.280) in his first eight games back in Triple-A with a double and a home run.

    ​ Orange County Register