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Dodgers rookie Gavin Lux staying busy in video game tournament while waiting for return to field

Lux said he would welcome a return to baseball, even if meant playing in scorching heat in empty ballparks in Arizona. In the meantime, he has been one of the top players in the MLB The Show tournament.

For as much as Gavin Lux is enjoying his time playing video games in the MLB The Show tournament, he’s ready to get back to the real thing, even if that means playing in empty stadiums in scorching heat in Arizona and being quarantined when away from the ballpark.

“At this point,” the Dodgers rookie said, “you gotta do what you gotta do, so I wouldn’t complain about it.”

Lux, who had played in 100-degree temperatures as a teenager in the Arizona Rookie League, was referring to the prospect of playing through the heat, but he also said that he wouldn’t mind the quarantine.

“I don’t have any kids or wife and I’d be away from my family anyways, so for me it’s not a big deal,” Lux said. “I would definitely do it.”

Lux, however, conceded that it might not be so easy for older players.

“I would completely understand if you wouldn’t want to do that and be away from your kids and wife for possibly four or five months,” he said. “Both ways, I would understand. You can’t really argue.”

The Arizona plan, in which Major League Baseball would emerge from the COVID-19 shutdown by having all 30 teams playing games in Arizona while essentially quarantining the players, is one of the ideas that has been broached.

Lux said he’s heard no “top secret information” about what other scenarios are most likely to get the sport going this season. He has been at home in Wisconsin, hearing the same rumors as fans while trying to squeeze his workouts around the spring snow.

He said he spends about two hours a day working out, either with the dumbbells he has at home or by using a friend’s vacated gym about 40 minutes away. Lux said his friend gives him the keys and he has the place to himself.

As for baseball workouts, the weather hasn’t cooperated much for him to get outside, but when he can he hits on the field at his high school.

Lux said once players get the green light to begin formal workouts in preparation for a season, it won’t take him long.

“At this point, give me 15-20 at-bats and I’ll be ready to go,” he said, conceding that pitchers would probably need more time.

While he’s waiting, Lux has had the opportunity to build his brand and interact with fans through his YouTube channel, in addition to playing the video game tournament with one representative from each MLB team.

“I’d be playing video games at night anyways, so it wouldn’t really change my daily routine,” Lux said. “It’s actually worked out pretty good.”

Lux won nine of his first 12 games, with eight more games scheduled for Monday and Tuesday nights. The top eight players will advance to the playoffs.

Lux said he’s been most impressed with Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette (9-3), Texas Rangers outfielder Joey Gallo (11-1) and Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Blake Snell (13-3).

“Bo smoked me,” Lux said. “I didn’t know he was that good at The Show. And Joey and Blake are obviously really good too. I think it’s going to be fun between us four.”