Dodgers name Turner Ward their new hitting coach

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Buster Olney reports that the Dodgers have hired Turner Ward to be their new hitting coach.

Ward was the Dbacks’ hitting coach for three years but left last month after a disagreement over the contract the club tendered him for 2016. Some have reported that Ward was lowballed by the Dbacks on his renewal. Either way, if he had accepted it, he would’ve had to get permission from the club to interview elsewhere and Arizona would not likely grant permission to the rival Dodgers. So: good call for Ward.

The Diamondbacks ranked second in the NL in runs scored this year with hitters Paul Goldschmidt, A.J. Pollock, and David Peralta all developing fantastically with Ward at the hitting helm.

Steven Souza Jr. injured his left knee

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Almost exactly a year ago, Diamondbacks outfielder Steven Souza Jr. tore a bicep while diving for a ball in a spring training game. He’d play in only 72 games last year but he really wasn’t healthy for any of them, with the injury and aggravations to it costing him production and causing him pain.

When he started spring training this year he said he’d take it easier in games that didn’t count so he could be ready for the regular season. Sadly, he was once again injured on the eve of Opening Day, crumbling to the ground after injuring his knee while scoring on a double in an exhibition game against the White Sox (video here if you want to see it).

The injury looked bad — he was in obvious pain and could not put any weight on the leg while being helped off the field. He’s undergoing an MRI today and we’ll hear more soon, but it does not look good.

Assuming Souza is out for an extended period, Adam Jones will likely be the Dbacks’ everyday right fielder.