A brief look at the new San Diego Padres’ infielder Brian Dozier.
The San Diego Padres recently announced that they signed veteran infielder Brian Dozier to a Minor League deal. The acquisition left some fans puzzled as there are currently many second base options like Jurickson Profar and Greg Garcia.
Some fans even compared the signing to the unpopular Ian Kinsler signing that was made last year. However, while Dozier is a veteran infielder, he does bring more to the table than Kinsler. Dozier actually had some production last season being a consistent starter for the World Series-winning Nationals.
The 32-year-old had a slash line of .238/.340/.430, along with 20 home runs. Dozier had just 50 RBIs as he has never been a big run producer, failing to get over 100 RBIs in his entire career.
The Mississippi native does bring a positive offensive presence to the team with a below-average glove, but he brings a lot more to this Padres team. One of the first images that come to mind when thinking of Dozier is him dancing to Pedro Capo’s Calma in the locker room with his teammates.
Dozier is serious when it comes to his work ethic, but he knows when to have fun, and that helps build chemistry and connect with his teammates. Dozier had an excellent relationship with several of his Latino teammates on the Nationals, and that can translate in San Diego.
The Padres obviously have a lot of Latino players on the roster, including some of the team’s biggest stars like Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr. Dozier also brings leadership to a very young team as he will be entering his ninth season in the MLB.
Brian Dozier speaks Spanish very well as he learned the language in his time with the Minnesota Twins to communicate better with Eduardo Escobar, who became one of his best friends. The Mississipi native has said that he wanted to speak Spanish because he saw that Escobar struggled a lot to speak English.
The Padres are lacking a veteran presence with a young team and a lack of leadership with certain players failing to step up. This was a problem last year and may have prolonged Ian Kinsler’s stay with the team.
The veteran infielder spent seven years with the Minnesota Twins, half a season with the Dodgers and 2019 with the Washington Nationals. Not a single bad comment has ever been made about him as he is the type of signing that can significantly help a team like the Padres.
There is not a lot of risk with this signing either as it was a Minor League deal, and it was only worth $2.2 million, according to Jon Heyman. Nothing compared to Ian Kinsler’s two-year $8 million deal that was made heading into the 2019 season.
Dozier’s biggest attribute other than his leadership is his pop as he has hit over 20 home runs in the past seven seasons. The Padres struggled with this last season as only five players hit over 20 bombs, and only Hunter Renfroe and Manny Machado hit over 30 dingers. Of those five players, Renfroe and Franmil Reyes are no longer with the team as Dozier can add some offense to this team as well.