December 19, 2014

Dodgers Trade Analysis – What We Need, and What We Don’t

The rumor mill has the Dodgers going after the Indians’ C.C. Sabathia and shortstop Jack Wilson from the Pirates according to Ken Rosenthal from FOX Sports. Rosenthal implies that Andy LaRoche, minor league pitcher James McDonald and shortstop Chin-Lung Hu could be some of the players potentially headed to Cleveland.

Now those would be some moves. In my opinion, help at shortstop is the clear priority with Furcal likely done for the season. You can never argue with adding a #1 starter to your pitching staff, but that’s not where the Dodgers really need the help. The Dodgers are currently leading the NL with a 3.70 ERA. Clearly the pitching staff is producing, and is on the upswing with Kuroda coming back and Kershaw waiting in the wings in the minors.

What the Dodgers desperately, desperately need is hitting (Jason Bay and Matt Holliday are at the top of my list). As I mentioned yesterday, there is no way the Dodgers are going to advance in the playoffs without some big bats producing for the team. If you’re not going to hit home runs (the Dodgers are ranked 15 out of 16 NL teams with just 60 HRs), then you need clutch hitting, and that’s something this team does not do well either. To date, they’ve generated 330 RBI, placing them a meager 14 out of 16 teams. I’m not saying that I don’t want Sabathia on the Dodgers, but picking up an ace is going to mean absolutely nothing without having the run support behind him.

As for “the kids,” the Dodgers need to get better, and not all of their young players are going to turn into All-Stars. Ned has shown a proficiency in identifying the best players to keep and the ones to move. Right now, I think LaRoche could be a great bargaining chip. We have depth at 3B with DeWitt and Nomar, and Loney is really showing some fantastic hustle and pop with the bat, making the stock of the first baseman a lot higher than Andy’s in my opinion. Now is the time to make a move, and Ned, this is your chance to save your job. Let’s make it happen.

Trade Rumors Circling: Kemp, Ethier, Loney on the Block?

 Pittsburgh Pirates' Jason Bay strokes a two-run double off Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Matt Scherzer in the fourth inning of a baseball game at Pittsburgh Sunday, June 8, 2008. The Pirates won 6-4.

If you believe Ken Rosenthal at Fox Sports, that is indeed the case.  According to Ken’s article, the Dodgers might actually pull the trigger on dealing one of the kids for a proven hitter, ala Jason Bay, Magglio Ordonez or Matt  Holliday.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately and have had a change of heart: I think the Dodgers should consider trading one (1) of their younger players.  I would have a bunch of conditions attached, of course, with the first being that Matt Kemp is off the table.  The guy is a future All-Star and he wants to be a Dodger.  I’d prefer to deal Loney or LaRoche, and could be convinced to move Ethier if the price was right.  The problem is the guy making the deals.  I simply don’t trust Ned to bring us back someone who isn’t on the downside of their career or a rent-a-player.  No, this needs to be a move that helps us win now, but also is piece that allows us to build for the future.

From Dejan Kovacevic (the Pirates’ beat writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette):

If any team offers the Pirates premier prospects for what they feel is fair value, from what I gather, they will not hesitate to move. Who takes over at shortstop or any other position would be secondary. The goal, as they often lay out, is to win a championship, and that only happens with a lot of high-end talent. That is not the current situation.