Every single roster spot is important during the regular season but even more so during the postseason. When a club such as the Dodgers sets their postseason roster, every single contingency must be considered. This year it’s even more important with only a small player pool to choose from. So it makes no sense for the Dodgers or any team for that matter to add a completely useless player to their 28-man postseason roster.
Yet unfortunately sources are confirming that the Dodgers are going to be adding outfielder Terrance Gore to their Wild Card series roster. It’s a confounding move and I don’t understand it. I’m not going to throw a fit over it. It’s definitely not the end of the world if Gore is sitting on the bench. I say that because more than likely he’ll never be used (which makes his addition even more of a waste), but if his spot bumps let’s say Edwin Rios off the roster, then it is absolutely infuriating.
Let’s be clear here, Gore is a useless player. He was so useless that the Dodgers never gave him a single plate appearance this season, designating him off the roster July 30. He cleared waivers (as most useless players will) and was sent back to the Dodger’s alternate training site. Gore is a career .224 hitter, has totaled zero home runs, and has posted a career 65 OPS+. Gore can’t hit, he has no power and he has no throwing arm. The only thing he can do is run the bases. That’s why he is on the roster.
But that’s what’s even more bizarre. Because the Dodgers like most teams in this modern era of moneyball baseball have no base-running. The Dodgers stole 29 bases in 60 games, but they were essentially a station to station base-running club. According to the hitting advancement with runners on base stat, the Dodgers ranked 18 out of 30 clubs with a below average rating. That’s the stat that measures how often and successfully a team takes extra bases or goes from first to third or second to home on base hits. The Dodgers were not good at that in 2020. So why would a club that doesn’t have much of a base-running team waste a roster spot on a guy who is there for the sole reason of being a pinch-runner?
I believe that a player has to show value in order to justify his place on the roster. I might dislike Austin Barnes because he is a dreadful hitter, but I admit that he’s also a very good defensive catcher. He calls a good game, frames well and knows the pitching staff. That’s valuable enough to justify his roster spot. So what does Gore do to justify his roster spot? Dave Robert’s comments on this situation are especially terrifying.
When asked if Gore was on his roster, Roberts said, “There’s a good chance. I don’t know when it’s supposed to be official, but I like what Terrance is doing.
Help me. He likes what Gore is doing? What would that be? Practicing? He’s had zero plate appearances this season. He’s never hit a home run in the major leagues. He has one career RBI and three extra-base hits.
He doesn’t do anything. It’s unlikely the Dodgers will use him. If they do use him you’ll probably be able to count on one hand how many times he actually gets into games. He can’t hit. He can’t field, and he can’t throw. He has no power, and inspires as much confidence at the plate as the Astros playing baseball without cheating. If there is enough space on the roster, then fine add Gore. But there is no reason to place Gore over anyone even remotely valuable. Of course after writing this, Gore will probably steal home in the ninth inning or hit his first career home run.