Rodney Dangerfield and Matt Kemp have a lot in common these days; they both don’t get no respect.
After the 2011 season it felt as if Matt Kemp could do no wrong. He was humble in his second place MVP voting against cheater Ryan Braun, 1 home run shy of being a 40-40 man and a major presence on and off the field. In 2012, hit still showed his pop, despite injury, and while taking 200 less at bats, he still hit over .300. Injuries would cut short a second consecutive run at MVP. Well, 2013, I think we all know about that disaster.
The Ricky Bobby attitude in Los Angeles seems to have lashed out at Matt Kemp for being injured. If you’re not first you’re last in this town. Yeah injuries suck and Matt Kemp’s slow start certainly didn’t help garner any new fans, but are we so quick to throw away Matt Kemp?
With a taste of success in LA, fans are very quick to take immediate and harsh actions on players that aren’t performing… Oh yeah and managers too.
Let’s be real for a minute people. Matt Kemp is the best hitter (when healthy) in the outfield for the Dodgers. NO NO NO! YASIEL PUIG IS! No, he isn’t. In a couple years, maybe.
Matt Kemp is the second best power hitter on the team behind Hanley Ramirez.
When healthy in 2011, he led in innings played, starts and games of MLB center fielders.
I shall conclude with this: While I don’t think Kemp is off limits for a trade, I think fans need to back away from the harsh Matt Kemp comments. He is a fine ballplayer, clean, great with interacting with fans and was starting to become a wealth of energy in the dugout.
Relax Dodger fans. When Matt Kemp returns in April fully healthy, you’ll want him in the lineup ready to make right on what went oh so wrong in 2013. I wouldn’t want him against the Dodgers, looking for revenge. Besides, moving Kemp would be no easy task. With his previous injuries, massive money due, he is no picnic to be picked up either. The Mariners have expressed interest, Rangers are in for anything with a bat and legs, Rays, and a myriad of other teams looking to bolster their offense. If everyone is looking at Kemp, don’t you think they know what others in Dodger organization hopefully know? Matt Kemp is a dangerous hitter.
Plug a healthy Kemp in the lineup with Hanley, AGon, Puig, Crawford… Yikes. The Dodgers have the most feared lineup in the NL. Now how about that respect?