Not sure how they evaluated who is trending whichever way, but ESPN is apparently down on the Los Angeles Dodgers, according to Jim Bowden’s latest grading of where each MLB stands.
As it stands, I guess it makes some sense, but there is so much in the air, I’d say any grade given to the Dodgers should be something closer to “incomplete” than whichever way the franchise might be going.
Maybe I’m an older fan, but I’m used to hoping for mediocrity before the new ownership group stepped in. In that sense any progress has the organization trending upward, still, in my opinion.
Anyway, this is how Bowden evaluated the current state of the Dodgers.
The Dodgers took a 94-win LDS team and turned it into a 92-win LDS team with a bevy of trades and free-agent signings. They will have a new manager to take them into the future after choosing Dave Roberts. The Dodgers do have a strong plan of getting younger and less expensive and are committed to a strong young core of players and prospects that includes Corey Seager, Yasiel Puig, Joc Pederson, Julio Urias and Yasmani Grandal. They are going to have to emphasize improving their starting rotation this offseason, either by persuading free-agent Zack Greinke to return or by signing one of the other top free-agent starters like Price, Zimmermann and Cueto and by improving the back of their rotation. The Dodgers also need to add quality and quantity to their bullpen to help support Kenley Jansen,Luis Avilan and Chris Hatcher.
By comparison, Bowden had the San Francisco Giants trending upwards pretty much because we’re heading into an even-numbered year, which seems lacking in the logic department, but who am I to judge the consistently incredible level of logic displayed by ESPN?