Andrew Martinez-Dodgers Nation

Andrew Martinez-Dodgers Nation

When the Los Angeles Dodgers were eliminated in the National League Division Series, once more at the hands of the St. Louis Cardinals, changes were expected. The question was who would exit and who would enter.

The disappointing postseason trip for a second-straight season spurred a seismic front office overhaul. Most notably, the recruitment and successful luring of Tampa Bay Rays general manager Andrew Friedman to Los Angeles as the Dodgers’ president of baseball operations.

After years of rejecting offers from other teams, Friedman was finally convinced to leave the comfort of the small market Rays for the the bright lights of Los Angeles. Former general manager Ned Colleti was reassigned to a senior advisor role under president and CEO Stan Kasten, and Friedman hired Farhan Zaidi as the club’s new general manager.

Friedman recently discussed the feelings that came with him moving cross-country, which he sees the positive and negative in, via Bill Plaschke of the LA Times:

Scared? “A little bit,” Friedman admits. “This forces me to be uncomfortable. I left an incredibly comfortable situation in Tampa. But part of the attraction in coming here is forcing myself to be uncomfortable, I look at it like a good thing.”

Friedman and Zaidi wasted little time in putting their imprint on the Dodgers, doing so with transactions not many would have predicted. With the sweeping changes, expectations have remained high, which is to be expected with a payroll over $200 million.

During his time at the helm of the Rays’ front office, Friedman produced teams that made it to the postseason four times, including a world series appearance in 2008 — after eight-consecutive losing seasons.

Operating with a limited budget and other small-market restrictions, Friedman changed the culture in Tampa Bay, and now leads a franchise with a seemingly endless supply of resources. Friedman hasn’t yet opened up the checkbook as some may expect from a big-market executive, but he’s nonetheless made moves that he believes will help the Dodgers achieve their goals.

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Zack Greinke Isn’t Convinced The Dodgers Improved During The Offseason


14 Responses

  1. Michael N. Norris

    His biggest worry should be fan back lash. He traded 2 of the most popular players on the team, and made some questionable free agent pickups. He traded one of those players (Kemp) to a division rival, which is never a smart move. Only time will tell if he is right. But the fan base wants a World Series. They do not get there again and the fans will give this guy more grief than he has ever heard.

    Reply
    • TimeisIllmatic

      The one thing a front office person shouldn’t worry about is what fans think. A lot of fans use heart over logic and in this case it was w/ Kemp and Gordon. And if you think about it, the Dodgers problem was pitching depth and defense: not offense. The offense is obviously there hence the reason we were one of the top teams in the NL. Friedman has signed guys to fill that void, but a lot of fans aren’t seeing big names and want to criticize instead.

      Reply
      • Michael N. Norris

        I disagree. This is Los Angeles. Not that minor league burg of Tampa Bay, and if you think that they should not worry about fan backlash, you are sadly mistaken, because you start the season under .500 for a couple of months and that is going to translate where it hurts the worse…attendance. Just ask McCourt. The offense was there because of Kemp and Gordon. Now defense was a little shaky, but the worst thing that team had was the bullpen and that was never addressed. You name me one guy he signed who has a winning history. Anderson and McCarthy have injury history’s, not so much winning. McCarthy was terrible in the NL west. And the new offense… there are a lot of question marks there,. Kendrick will be fine, but Rollins is 36, he has slowed down and no longer is a viable leadoff man. The entire infield is over 30. The biggest question marks are in the OF. Except for Puig, every guy out there is a HUGE question mark because you have no idea what Pederson is going to do, Ethier has been terrible for the last 3 years, you do not know if Crawford will be healthy the entire year, Heisey is a so so hitter , but good OF. SVS is not an everyday player and his value is off the bench anyway,. Out side of the top 3 I do not trust any of those new starters. The bull pen added a ton of arms, not one of them a name or solid guy. Peralta is 39 for heavens sake,, they have had injury issues already. So yeah, Freidman had better worry because in my eyes and a lot of Dodger fans I know, he screwed up royally…and this team will not come close to the 94 wins of last year

      • TimeisIllmatic

        This is Los Angeles. Not that minor league burg of Tampa Bay, and if you
        think that they should not worry about fan backlash, you are sadly
        mistaken, because you start the season under .500 for a couple of months
        and that is going to translate where it hurts the worse…attendance.

        If that’s the case, we’ll definitely be able to differentiate between fair-weather Dodgers fans who are only around when they win and run away when things go bad and real Dodgers fans. The way you’re talking you sound like the first one.

        The offense was there because of Kemp and Gordon.

        Lmao, are you serious? So you’re gonna completely disregard A-Gon, Puig, Crawford, and Uribe? Rollins and Kendrick have pop as well. Kemp and Gordon weren’t the main factors for the Dodgers offensive success. Gordon had one good first half of the season and barely got on base at that. I have nothing against the guy, but the Dodgers are going all in. Kemp is very hot and cold. Right now was the best time to deal him before he had no value at all. If he got hurt again, all we would hear fans say is “Kemp should’ve been traded,” “Dodgers don’t know what they’re doing.”

        Anderson and McCarthy have injury history’s, not so much winning.

        They’ve been on bad/terrible teams. Injuries have been a concern for their careers thus far, but maybe those two guys haven’t gave their full effort to stay healthy and get stronger due to constantly being on losing teams. I’m sure losing every season can take a toll on your psyche.

        The bullpen added a ton of arms, not one of them a name or solid guy.

        Just proved my point. If a big name isn’t picked up, people want to judge instead of giving guys a chance.

        So yeah, Freidman had better worry because in my eyes and a lot of
        Dodger fans I know, he screwed up royally…and this team will not come
        close to the 94 wins of last year

        …But if they win a WS, you’ll act like you’ve been down w/ Friedman this whole time…

      • Michael N. Norris

        First of all, I am a lifelong Dodger fan and I have seen this team good and bad, so I am no fair weather fan. The last 2 months of the season Kemp and Crawford carried the team. Gonzo was steady all year..I was not implying that Gordon and Kemp did it on their own, but they had a lot to do with it. Uribe was great………………when he played. same with Crawford. Personally I do not care what Freidman does. He is the president of baseball operations, but I do NOT have to agree with every move he made…and yeah Tampa Bay is a minor league burg, they have never supported their team. Gordon was in his FIRST full season as a starter at a new position. Did I expect him to hit .290? No…neither did I expect him to lead the league in triples and stolen bases, but he did. Anderson was on the A’s…..and they were not a bad or terrible team when he was there. By name for the BP I mean someone who has a solid background not necessarily a star type guy. Peralta and Hatcher and all the sore armed retreads he has signed so far do not impress me one bit. And if they were to win the WS, I would in no way say I was for every move Freidman has made. Do not assume that you know anything about how I feel about this team. I have been watching them too long to care what you or anyone else thinks about what I think…we disagree, leave it at that…Only time will tell if I am totally wrong…if so. I eat crow…no big deal………but the whole NL is better……not going to be easy to win….

      • DODGERS1955

        that’s right ive been a dodgers fan since I was 7 and ive been through thick and thin with them so were not fair weather fans we here for the duration. we will always be.

      • Michael N. Norris

        You know how hard it is to get there in the first place. Back when there were 8 teams in each league it was not easy. When they went to division play it got harder because of the playoffs. And now with the 2 wild cards and 2 tiers of playoffs it is even harder, yet these clowns continue to think that by changing GM’s and the president of baseball operations that the magic wand they welded to completely overhaul the team means that we are going to the World Series. What a crock. There are too many question marks on this team right now. other than the 4 starting pitchers, and the inf and 1 OF spot, there are questions. Who starts in CF and LF, although Crawford will most likely be in LF….do they platoon at C or is Grandal an everyday guy. Will Anderson stay healthy enough to be the #5. if he isn’s…who is. and who is the last bench guy and who are the 7 guys in the BP….Howell is a lock..after that who knows…

      • ninjasarenameless

        Timeisllmatic, don’t even bother with that clown. You’re absolutely spot on– if there’s one party that the front office should NOT listen to when it comes to player decisions, it’s the fans.

      • TimeisIllmatic

        Thanks! Glad someone agrees w/ me.

      • Michael N. Norris

        Having that guy agree with you is like getting the plague…it does not help….you have your opinion and I have mine,……does that make either of us more right than the other..?? No….it just means we disagree. You like the moves, I don’t,…..

      • Michael N. Norris

        The only clown on here is you. + I like everyone else on this forum is entitled to my opinion, you do not agree, fine…I said there would be fan backlash, and there will be if the moves they made do not work out. My statement was they traded popular guys and if what they did does not work, the fans will reply by not going to the games. And I will guarantee you all teams worry about what their fans think. Every team in the bigs has a community relations department. Whether they listen or not, that is their problem. I am sure fans have made themselves heard on twitter and all the other social media outlets….and mr ninja whoever you are. I would watch about calling people names that you do not know. Could always come back an bite you….

      • DODGERS1955

        signing a 39 yr old pitcher was stupid, your right Norris they wont win 94 this yr. this team will finish 3rd this yr if not worse.thanks friedman for screwing up one of the best teams in the national league.i couldn’t see trading Gordon or kemp they were both just coming into there own.another stupid move trading kemp to a divisional team.pederson isn’t ready and for another get rid of that guerrero trade him he cant play defense for shit.darwin barney is way better at defense, guerrero is a big cry baby, so he might stay and someone else gets sent down to make room for him. that’s bull shit .friedmans gonna get what he deserves also. the fans wont put up with this for long friedman could’ve got a top pitcher for the rotation but he didn’t signed a bunch of has beens for the bull pen. I thought he said he wanted to go with younger players that was a lie from the beginning.

      • Michael N. Norris

        Trading Kemp to a division rival was nuts……there is no there word for it.

  2. steven

    Really your gonna bash on Friedman? How stupid can you be. Your gonna complain about thongs you comprehend so you should just be quiet. Everyone is talking about how dumb he is for getting rid of kemp and not helping the bullpen. HA. He made the bullpen 100000 times better by just subtraction. He took all the bad pitchers that should not being pitching and got rid of them. That allows us to play our better players like paco. And a huge piece we got from the gordon trade was hatcher. Sit here and disagree but that guy will be amazing just like 2 or 3 of the non roster spring training invitees. And as for kemp, it was smart to trade him. You have no idea how hard it is for me to say that but its true. Hes been my favorite player since day one, and when all the doubters would bash on him, i was one of the only ones who still believed in him. I couldnt believe it when they traded him, it just hurt, especially to see him in a diffrent uniform. Ill always be a kemp fan, but it was best for the dodgers. Yes he did great offensively last half season, but he wasnt aging good. He lost his speed, defense, and bat speed was diminishing. And if we had kept him and he got hurt or just did not put up good numbers, fans would look at friedman as if he was an idiot for not trading him. Everybody needs to just let this team mesh and give us a ws which i believe it can. Theres a lot more to baseball then BA, HR, and ribies.

    Reply

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