The reality that the Los Angeles Dodgers didn’t sign prized Japanese right-hander Masahiro Tanaka has settled in, but discussions that the organization has reached its spending limit certainly aren’t true.
Tanaka signed for seven-years and $155 million before adding in the $20 million posting fee and the Dodgers were among the final bidders. While their offer topped $100 million, they fell short by $25-$35 million of the final price. However, according to Bill Shaikin of the LA Times, the Dodgers weren’t convinced about what they saw:
We’ll look back in a few years and see whose scouting reports were more accurate, said a person familiar with the Dodgers’ thinking.
While the Dodgers certainly could’ve used another starter, Tanaka would’ve been slotted behind Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke while he’ll be a top of the rotation pitcher in New York. Along with the top two aces, the Dodgers have Hyun-Jin Ryu third in the pecking order with newly signed Dan Haren behind in the number four spot.
As of now, Josh Beckett is slated to be the fifth starter and immediately after the news about Tanaka heading to New York broke, analysts started predicting the Dodgers would sign free agent starter Bronson Arroyo. The 36-year-old starter is one of the few Tier B free agent starters that were held up by the Tanaka process and should sign quickly. There’s also chatter that teams like the Dodgers or Arizona Diamondbacks will now reach out to the Tampa Bay Rays about a possible trade for ace David Price.
Dodgers GM Ned Colletti told Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times that the organization feels fine with their starting pitching as is or if they sign another starter and there’s a chance prospect Zach Lee could compete for the final spot. Rest assured, the Dodgers don’t seem to have reached their spending limit yet and not signing Tanaka seems to be due to a lack of confidence he’ll stuff will translate to the big leagues.
ICYMI: The Dodgers signed Clayton Kershaw to a record-breaking contract extension