The Dodgers are in a weird situation when it comes to their outfielders. They’re somehow both crowded and seriously lack depth. Not sure how that would come about or even make sense, but here we are.
As it currently stands, Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier, Yasiel Puig, Joc Pederson, Scott Van Slyke and Scott Schebler will all get time in the outfield with Enrique Hernandez spending time out there as part of his utility player duties. That’s a long list with so few names who you’d feel completely comfortable labeling an everyday player.
I’d bring up the contractual situations of those players, but I’d just get depressed.
It should come as no surprise, then, when Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that a few of those guys are rumored to be available via trade.
Many suspect Yasiel Puig could become available, but only if someone offers a top young starter, something that isn’t likely to happen considering his abysmal, injury-wracked 2015 season. Others say Carl Crawford is available and also wouldn’t be shocked if Andre Ethier becomes available, too.
Heyman is correct to point out a move involving Puig would be selling low on the cheap, young and talented right fielder. Yes, he is a headache at times both on and off the field. That by no means, however, that trading him away simply to rid the franchise of said headache while his value is so diminished makes any sense.
The Dodgers would likely have to swallow a large portion (if not all) of Crawford’s inflated contract given his injury issues and general uselessness by the time the postseason rolled around last year.
Ethier is coming off a solid 2015 campaign, but if he isn’t moved by the time next season starts, he’ll have the right to veto any trade thanks to the 10-and-5 clause, which states that any player who’s spent 10 years in the MLB and five such seasons with the same team has the right to reject any potential trade. This somewhat diminishes his trade value once the season starts, and while Farhan Zaidi says the Dodgers wouldn’t trade him sooner rather than later for that clause, Zaidi might be trying to talk up Ethier’s value in any deal that comes this winter.
It’s really to see all three of those guys still on the roster by the time this offseason comes to a close. Injury, contractual or maturity issues are annoying if it’s just one or two of those to worry about. The Dodgers hit the trifecta and can’t possibly be okay with that moving forward.