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Ryan Theriot's shrinking play can't be making the Dodgers feel good about second base next season

September 25, 2010 |  8:15 am

Theriot_600

Ryan Theriot, please come back. All is forgiven. Or if it’s the team that did something, forgive them. Whatever, just come back.

Back to the player you were when you first showed up at Dodger Stadium. You know, the guy who batted .309 in August, with 18 runs and six extra-base hits.

As opposed to the player who has completely disappeared offensively.

In Theriot’s last 60 at-bats, he’s hitting an even .100 with 11 strikeouts. And without a single extra-base hit or RBI.

Whatever’s below the Mendoza Line, Theriot is about to cross it. Beware the great unknown.

Defensively he’s been outstanding, and certainly an upgrade over Blake DeWitt, the player the Dodgers exchanged for him. DeWitt, by the way, has hit only .167 in September.

But Theriot’s play down the stretch has to be a concern to the Dodgers. He’s arbitration eligible and not going anywhere. He is, in theory, their starting second baseman next year.

Jamey Carroll, of course, has been splitting time lately with Theriot at second and has been outplaying him. But Carroll’s value is in his versatility. Plus, he’ll be 37 at the start of next season.

It’s not that Theriot is a kid (he’ll be 31 in December), but he’s supposed to be an everyday player. And he was a career .288 hitter coming into this season and batting .284 with the Cubs this year before the trade.

That’s a long way from batting .100. It’s a long way from making the Dodgers feel good about second base heading into the winter.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers second baseman Ryan Theriot turns a double play with San Diego's Adrian Gonzalez sliding toward him. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times

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