{}
CLOSE

Now Commenting On:

Defense remains strength at third base

|
Defense remains strength at third base play video for Defense remains strength at third base

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers haven't gotten much offensive production from their third-base options, but that hasn't hurt the defense.

So while manager Don Mattingly continues to mix and match at third to find offense, he's not worried about sacrificing defensively.

"Our defense at third has been great," Mattingly said before Friday's game against the Brewers. "It don't matter who we throw over there. They've all caught it really well."

Juan Uribe made his eighth start at third on Friday, his second in as many games after three straight starts by Jerry Hairston. Uribe walked three times with a single and an RBI during Thursday's 3-2 win against the Mets, which intrigued Mattingly.

"He's been more patient," the manager said. "For him to walk three times in a game, we didn't see any of that before. He's pretty much been on base."

Uribe is hitting .190 with two homers and four RBIs, but is reaching base at a .414 clip in 11 games. He's seen more time at third recently with Luis Cruz hitting .087 (4-for-46) in 16 games.

Cruz was the primary third baseman to begin the year and made nine starts, but his slump has limited his playing time.

"Cruzer will get his chances again," Mattingly said. "This is the time for him to get his swing back together. We're going to need him. I'll get him back in the mix."

Hairston provided some spectacular defense at third during a six-game road trip, but went 2-for-15 and is hitting .172.

Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{}
{}
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español