The Los Angeles Dodgers went into the All-Star break with the best record in the National League and they’ve come out of it looking anemic offensively and have suffered two consecutive losses.
Their generally reliable starting pitching has given up a combined five runs in the first inning of the two games, and both Dan Haren and Zack Greinke were unable to go deep into their respective starts.
Josh Beckett has a torn labrum and two cysts in his hip — not simply an impingement — and will attempt to navigate the remainder of the season with the injury. The Dodgers are certainly facing some concerns and that’s without having mentioned the outfield situation or Hanley Ramirez’s health.
Aside from Greinke’s most recent start, the front end of the pitching rotation has been stellar and what’d you expect from the right-hander and Clayton Kershaw. Hyun-Jin Ryu (10-5, 3.44 ERA) is better than your typical No. 3 starter.
However, then the Dodgers hit some trouble with a struggling Haren and ailing Beckett. David Price, Cole Hamels and other pitchers are considered available, but just last week Colletti said he refuses to empty the farm system to acquire elite talent.
When asked again about trading for Price, Colletti spoke highly of the farm system but appeared slightly more open to the possibility of acquiring the left-hander, according to Bill Plaschke of the LA Times:
We think we’re in a good spot, we think we have some legitimate players coming in,” Colletti said Friday. “But I’m not saying we wouldn’t do it.”
Colletti again reiterated the stance of improving the team will occur if an opportunity presents itself:
“If there’s something out there that makes sense, I think you’ve got to take a shot at it.”
Manager Don Mattingly also holds the farm system in high regard and isn’t in favor of depleting it for a situation that may not be long-term:
I’d hate to see us unload a couple of our guys down there that I’ve watched enough to know, you’ve got quality guys coming,” Mattingly said Friday, speaking for many farm-system fans. “I don’t think you give those guys away for a temporary anything”
Price isn’t eligible for free agency until after the 2015 season and Hamels has four years remaining on his deal with a team and vesting option for a fifth season.
The Dodgers don’t need to trade for one of Hamels or Price. However, given the shaky status of their two veteran pitchers at the backend of the rotation, acquiring pitching help may be necessary for a team with World Series aspirations.
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