As we embark on the second half of the 2012 season, we should reflect back and try to analyze what has worked well and what has not. If the Dodgers want to make a genuine effort to finish first in the NL West, then they are going to have to play better than they have this past month. Luckily they had a stupendous start to the season, because right now they are hanging by a blue thread in the top spot. Let’s be honest, none of us actually thought that this team would be in first place right now. Ned Colletti pieced together a roster on a shoestring budget while the Dodgers were broiled in bankruptcy and the black cloud of Frank McCourt hung over Chavez Ravine. Somehow a rotation with Aaron Harang and Chris Capuano instead of Hiroki Kuroda has exceeded our expectations. Overcoming injury after injury, the B team has come out and filled in for our disabled starters. Now that we have new management at the helm and the real opportunity to make it to the postseason this season, the Dodgers must make some changes so that they can be successful down the stretch.
Every season there are washouts and disappointments. It’s just part of the game. Much like the refreshing productivity from Chris Capuano and Aaron Harang or the fill-in heroics of Elian Herrera and Luis Cruz, there is those who have frustrated and downright angered Dodger fans with their ineptitude. Yes, I’m talking about you Juan Uribe.
Just how bad has Juan Uribe been as a Dodger? Well let’s put it this way, if you were completely unproductive at your job for a solid year and a half you would be fired, correct? That’s exactly what the Dodgers need to do with Juan Uribe. YOU’RE FIRED! Juan Uribe needs to be released as soon as possible for the health of this team.
Third base has been a black hole for the Dodgers for many years now. Perhaps that is why Colletti signed the Dominican infielder to a three-year $21 million contract before the 2011 season. The thing is even though Uribe won a World Series ring with the San Francisco Giants the season prior, it was not like he was good or anything. In 148 games with the Giants, he hit .248. He did have 24 homeruns and 85 RBIs., which was a career high. In 399 at bats as a Dodger, Juan Uribe has hit a grand total of 5 homeruns. In 2011 he spent most of the season on the disabled list, and he only appeared in 77 games for the Dodgers. He hit a paltry .204 and only managed 4 homeruns and 28 RBIs. By August it was announced that he would need season-ending sports hernia surgery.
During the offseason Uribe supposedly was working out and had lost some weight while in his home country of the Dominican Republic. Ned Colletti had reportedly paid him a visit and spoke to him about what was expected from him. When he showed up to Spring Training, there was comments about his physique, but I honestly didn’t see a difference. In fact, Juan has been even more terrible so far this season than his horrendous season prior. He’s been hurt off and on with an arthritic wrist or is it a sprained ankle this week? In 44 games, Uribe can’t even hit at the Mendoza Line and is sporting a .194 batting average with one measly homerun and 12 RBIs.
I’ve had enough, and it frankly frustrates me to no end watching his horrific flailing swing. It’s time for the Dodgers to move on from the Juan
Uribe disaster and find a acceptable third-sacker. It was August before the Dodgers finally cut the washed up Garrett Anderson in 2010, can we please pull the plug sooner this time? Sure, the Dodgers are going to have to eat the rest of his salary which I believe is about $12 million remaining. Sometimes the hardest choices aren’t cheap.
I expect that the Dodgers will in fact make a move soon to replace Uribe. They have been scouting the likes of Chase Headley, Jed Lowrie, and Aramis Ramirez. There’s even been rumors surrounding Ty Wigginton. The Dodgers are looking at everyone and all possibilities. July 31st is fast approaching, but hopefully we won’t have to wait that long for them to send Uribe on his way.
My grumblings may sound harsh, but there’s just not a lot of good to say about Uribe. He is an adequate defensive third baseman, but unfortunately the National League doesn’t play with a designated fielder yet. James Loney has been frustrating and his offense has been asleep, but James Loney has given us some great memories as a Dodger and is at least playing at league average. Juan Uribe had a couple clutch hits in the 2010 World Series, but that was for a different team.
Juan Uribe must be let go immediately not only for the sanctity of our team but also for sanity of the fans. He’s not going to miraculously turn things around. It’s time to take the garbage out.