Just who is Victor Gonzalez?
A few weeks ago someone on Twitter mentioned that we should keep an eye on Victor Gonzalez as a fast-moving left-hand relief pitcher. I don’t know who to attribute that tweet too, and it made me glance at his stats but nothing jumped out at me.
Yesterday, Jim Bowden of The Athletic ran a story about players on the farm who might make an impact and two Dodgers popped up on his list. One, of course, was Gavin Lux the hottest hitter in professional baseball right now.
1. Gavin Lux, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers did the right thing by refusing to include Lux in any deadline deal, just as they did previously with Cody Bellinger, Walker Buehler and Corey Seager. It’s a decision that Dodgers fans will be happy about in the long run. However, Lux also might factor in the Dodgers’ pennant race anyway, all by himself.
The other name, however, took me and maybe Dodger Twitter by surprise.
4. Victor Gonzalez, LHP, Los Angeles Dodgers
Pay attention to what Gonzalez is doing for the Dodgers in the minor leagues. He’s throwing 94-96 mph from the left side and has given up just one hit to a left-handed hitter since they moved him to the bullpen. He could end up being a legitimate lefty specialist for L.A.
Which prompted Jon Weisman to produce a Twitter Poll about Victor Gonzalez
POLL for #Dodgers fans: Victor Gonzalez?
— Jon Weisman (@jonweisman) August 7, 2019
All this led me to look at him again, and given that the Dodger left-hand options right now are Julio Urias / Caleb Ferguson / Adam Kolarek you could see why the Dodger just might take a look at Victor Gonzalez. Adam Kolarek had some nice stats from Tampa but the sidewinding lefty has now made three appearances with the Dodgers and only gotten one out while giving up two hits and a walk and doesn’t look particularly impressive either. Caleb Ferguson was great last year but hasn’t had the command this year that he had last year. Just looking at July he has four walks in only three innings.
Victor Gonzalez meanwhile has only made six appearances in AAA but he has struck out eight of the thirteen outs he’s recorded, with zero runs allowed. Victor was being used as a starting pitcher but that changed on July 17th where he has now made nine straight relief appearances and has given up zero runs in the last eight. Over his last eight relief appearances, 25 outs, 2 hits, zero earned runs, 2 walks, ten strikeouts.
Who knows, maybe Jim Bowden is right this time just like he was right about Cody Bellinger in the spring of 2017.