The Dodgers clubhouse is very different this spring than it was a few months ago. The team suffered some huge losses, including Trea Turner, Cody Bellinger and, of course, one of the leaders of this team in Justin Turner. However, different isn’t always a bad thing.
At spring training this year, our very own Doug McKain caught up with Austin Barnes, someone who has been around this team for a long time. McKain asked Barnes how much this clubhouse has changed from when he started back in 2015 to where it is today. Here’s what he said:
“It’s definitely changed. But, you know, it changed when Kiké [Hernandez] left and Joc [Pederson] and [Corey] Seager left, too. So we’ll figure it out. There’s a lot of good guys here, getting to know them and know how they work, knowing how they play. It’s exciting. You know, guys like [David] Peralta, Miggy [Rojas] and stuff like that. So it’s a great addition to our team.”
Having been in that clubhouse during spring training, I can attest that the overall vibes were very good. You could see how much everyone liked each other, and how it was clear that they were all working towards the same goal of winning it all this year.
It was also nice to see the veterans talking to the young guys, and, of course, the young guys all hanging out together. But overall, you could really tell that this was a strong clubhouse, and one that won’t have any trouble building chemistry this season.
The injury to Gavin Lux was definitely a hit. However, the way Miguel Rojas responded — announcing he was going to skip the World Baseball Classic to continue working with his new teammates — only further proved how much this team is committed to winning this season.
So, yes, the clubhouse is definitely going to be different this season. But sometimes, different can be a good thing. And after shockingly losing in the NLDS last season, I think the Dodgers needed different.
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