It’s no secret Los Angeles is a second baseman short. The team heavily pursued Brian Dozier, but hasn’t been able to reach an agreement with Minnesota. Ian Kinsler and Logan Forsythe are the most popular alternatives, though they also have shortcomings. Kinsler demands an extension to accept a deal to L.A. while the Rays typically drive a hard bargain moving impact players.

CBS Sports recently glanced at the Dodgers’ second base conundrum.  It named Kinsler the “best option” but expressed concern over Kinsler’s commitment request.

On paper though, Kinsler is a perfect fit for Los Angeles as a right-handed batter with power and above-average defense. He’s the closest thing to Dozier out there. Unfortunately to the Dodgers, it’s difficult to see this one coming together as long as Kinsler sticks to his guns about wanting an extension to waive his no-trade clause. He’s the best non-Dozier option on the market.

Kinsler is indeed the best alternative to Dozier on paper. The article coined Forsythe as more “sensible,” but questioned if the Dodgers would pay an exuberant price. More importantly, it mentioned a couple quieter names who could make sense.

Jurickson Profar is one. The 23-year-old infielder has been displaced in Texas despite his talent. He missed 2014 and 2015 with injuries before a disappointing 2016 campaign where he struggled to gain footing in the batter’s box. CBS proposed a Jose De Leon or Brock Stewart could entice pitching-hungry Texas. The Rangers have since signed Tyson Ross and probably want to take a look at their own guys. There’s little doubt Profar is expendable, so if the Dodgers want to take a chance on his talent, there could be a deal here. If the Rangers retain him and he bombs again, his “talented prospect” label could shift to “bust” sooner rather than later.

Zack Cosart was touched on, though it’d require him playing a position he’s never played. The Reds are trying to open spots for Dilson Herrera and Jose Peraza so they’d probably move Cosart for cheap. The same could be said for Tyler Saladino of the White Sox, who the article cites as an under-the-radar option who could pay dividends. To play devil’s advocate: Despite being 27 years old, Saladino has had limited playing time and Chicago may prefer to see what it has. There’s little reason to move the San Diego native without seeing how much more his offense grows to complement an outstanding glove.

Over at Outside Pitch Sports Network, Daniel Federico wondered if Starlin Castro might fit Los Angeles. Similar to Profar, Castro was once considered an elite prospect but never blossomed into complete form. The Cubs traded Castro to New York last offseason after years of trade rumors and whispers within the organization that Castro was a problem. He brings power and a four-year pact, but not much else. While transitioning to second would help Castro defensively, he’s undisciplined at the plate and more than likely has peaked as a player. If New York were to move him, it’d probably cost more than it’s worth.

No matter how many options you or I come up with, there’s always a “but.” The best three options sit a head above the rest, but if the Dodgers can’t get those done, they may be better off re-signing Chase Utley (or bringing in another vet) and moving forward with the current group. Teams see the Dodgers have a glaring hole but there’s no reason to be desperate. If L.A. struggles to find production from that spot, more lanes will open by the trade deadline.

Baseball America’s top 10 Dodger prospects is headlined by Cody Bellinger

About The Author

News Desk

Gabe Burns is an award-winning journalist. He serves as a reporter and editor at the DodgersNation news desk. He additionally works as editor-in-chief of The Spectator, Valdosta State University's student paper. Gabe's work has been featured on a number of platforms, including Draft Breakdown and Pro Football Spot. His byline has been cited in media such as the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune. Aside from covering Dodgers baseball, Gabe enjoys watching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Orlando Magic and Tampa Bay Lightning. He can be followed on Twitter at @GabeBurns_DN.

17 Responses

  1. Jeffrotall

    How about offering up a nice package to the Brewers for Ryan Braun and Jonathan Villar. With Villar, we would get a switch hitting lead off hitter plus he could play short if Seager got injured. With Braun and Villar in our lineup, I think we could match up with anyone. Might cost us but we’d have a nice double play combo for years to come.

    Reply
  2. GeorgeInnes

    Hey, I’ve got a suggestion.  Let’s stop with all the nonsense from these sportswriters about potential Dodger trades for second basemen.  The Dodgers have a great farm system and a great team for 2017.  For second base, re-sign Utley and have him platoon with Hernandez and/or Barnes.  Barnes will be the backup catcher, but he should get more at bats and a platoon with Utley can make that happen.  I just hope the Dodgers’ front office is not listening to all these dopes who want them to trade away valuable top prospects for some pie in sky acquisitions.  All the Dodgers need is a break out season from Urias and/or De Leon, and their ticket will be written for the World Series.

    Reply
  3. Giantkiller

    Even though I hate the idea of acquiring Braun, I think this would be an excellent solution. The Brewers have an interest in Puig as well. It’s just that Braun’s character is garbage.

    Reply
  4. JustinKlein

    No we need an established second baseman , if we didn’t trade Howie Kendrick this wouldn’t have been a problem plus Utley was looking it in the playoffs they had to take him out more than once

    Reply
  5. Arodc03

    That sounds good but the question comes down to which prospects are the Dodgers willing to give up? This is were all trades break down. Yes DeLeon has been conceded but beyond him, teams want more prospects. Not too many teams want Puig and they especially don’t want high price vets like Kazmir and McCarthy. So, what constitutes a “nice package”?

    Reply
  6. AlwaysCompete

    I am in somewhat
    agreement with GeorgeInnes that Dodgers could make due with their current
    roster, and should keep their farm intact. 
    However, I am not a huge advocate for Kike’ as a platoon regular at
    2B.  I would prefer to give Chris Taylor
    a legit chance.  Barnes can play 2B in an
    emergency, but he needs to be behind the plate. 
    Barnes is considered an okay defensive catcher with slightly above
    average framing skills (if you care to follow that metric). And while his offense has not yet blossomed
    at ML level, he is considered a plus bat from the right side.  He cannot improve his catching skills or
    learn the pitching staff by playing 2B.  His
    offensive abilities will never show as a backup, but he needs to be given a
    chance.  Let him stay at catcher and let
    the 4 2B on the ML or AAA roster play 2B.
    I have no desire
    to give up quality pitching prospects for a maybe in Profar, Cosart, or
    Castro.  Profar’s 2016 stats reported
    above indicate that he is no better than Hernandez.  Sub Mendoza against LHP…how does that help a
    team that needs to hit LHP?  Chris Taylor
    can play a better defensive 2B and hits LHP better.  He can also give the lineup some speed. 
    Assuming the
    Twins continue to decline a Dozier for De Leon swap, and the FO is not sold on
    Kike’/Taylor/Culberson, sign Aaron Hill for one year who hit
    .273/.357/.388/.745 against LHP (158 PA). 
    Let Willie Calhoun prove whether he can play 2B or not at AAA for the
    full year.  IMO, he does not have to be a
    GG.  He needs to be able to make the
    routine play and have some range.  Daniel
    Murphy is not a good defensive 2B, but he can be my 2B anytime.  With the signing of Jose Miguel Fernandez, I believe
    the potential of Chase Utley are diminished unless he comes down in salary
    requirements.  Save the dollars it would
    take to sign Utley and Blanton, and take the risk with Greg Holland.  The ceiling for Holland far surpasses that of
    Utley or Blanton.
    I like De
    Leon, and think he has top of the rotation potential.  He has huge swing and miss pitching skills.  But the Dodgers have too many ML Ready
    RHP.  With Kershaw at #1 (please extend
    him), Hill at #2, Maeda #3, and Urias #4, the Dodgers need a #5.  Forgetting about Kazmir/McCarthy/Ryu, the
    Dodgers have Stripling/Stewart/De Jong/Oaks/ as ML ready now, and
    Buehler/Sborz/Alveraz/ not far behind and Abdullah/White/Sopko not far behind
    them.  Not all of those pitchers can be
    on the Dodger 25 man roster at the same time, so if the FO can improve a
    position of need for the next two years for De Leon alone, do it.  The Dodgers will find a #5 in their system,
    but get a needed plus 2B with a plus RH power bat.

    Reply
  7. JustinKlein

    AlwaysCompete i agree with you on holland but kazmir is projected to be the fifth starter

    Reply
  8. Jeffrotall

    Arodc03 You’ve got to remember that Villar is only 25 years old. He’s a switch hitter and he stole 62 bases last year so he’s not going to be cheap and Braun I think is still a force. If it were me, I’d start off by saying  to the Brewers you can have your choice of any 6 players in our whole organization, but in addition,you must also take one of  Kazmir or McCarthy, BUT THE UNTOUCHABLES ARE:  Alvarez, Bellinger, Buehler, Grandal   ( we need a catcher), Jansen, Kershaw, Pederson, Seager, Turner and Urias.

    Reply
  9. Arodc03

    Jeffrotall I’m not arguing for or again t Villar.  My point is that everyone wants to trade for these good players but not willing to give up top talent for them. So you haven’t answered my question, what constitutes a “nice package”?  Because when you say it’s a “nice package”, the “nice” part of this statement implies it’s “nice” for the Dodgers not for the Brewers.   

    And if I said, Ok, 6 players: DeLeon, Stewart, Toles, Puig, Verdugo and Kazmir (None on your UNTOUCHABLE list) for Braun and Villar. Did your UNTOUCHABLE list get bigger?

    Reply
  10. Jeffrotall

    Arodc03 Jeffrotall Nope. I’d do that in a heartbeat. To tell you the truth, the only one out of those I’d really hate to give up would be Puig but you have to give up something to get something. I didn’t include Puig on my list because I figured the Brewers might want him. If it came down to it, I’d actually rather have Puig than Pederson.

    Reply
  11. liberalarefinished

    GeorgeInnes totally agree with you. Sign Utley.

    Reply
  12. Arodc03

    Jeffrotall  I would do it too for the same reason of giving up something to get something.  However I think most Dodger fans would disagree with us, including the FO.  Everyone is so traumatized by the Pedro Martinez for DeShields trade that they are afraid of giving up any young talent.

    Reply
  13. AlwaysCompete

    JustinKlein AlwaysCompete I agree that Kazmir will be #5 if still on team.  But that makes my point. That puts De Leon and Stewart back at AAA with De Jong, Oaks, and probably Frias.  They also have an organizational AAA starter in Wilmer Font.  That would be 6 at AAA, and that is assuming that Stripling goes to the bullpen.  With Jansen, McCarthy, Fields, Nuno, Hatcher, and Baez as RHRP, does Stripling with remaining options, stay at ML without a move?  If De Leon goes back down, that does not increase his value. With the logjam at AAA, that may push back the development of Josh Sborz, and Andrew Sopko at AA (not counting Isaac Anderson or Scott Barlow), and then the domino effect down the organizational ladder.

    LHRP include Dayton, Liberatore, Avilan, and Wood.  They probably keep Dayton Liberatore, and Wood, with Avilan going to AAA.  But with Broussard and Cash and several more organizational AAA relievers (including a couple of good ones), there’s a logjam at AAA as well.  That also limits the number of innings of RHRP that does not make the major league roster.

    As long as Kershaw, Hill, Maeda, and Urias are in the rotation, the best De Leon can be this year is the #5.  I like De Leon, but if the ML roster can be improved by moving him, then do it.  The #5 spot is currently Kazmir, but it can just as easily be filled by McCarthy, Stewart, Stripling, De Jong, Oaks, or even Frias and Wood.  The Dodgers have a surplus of RHP, of which De Leon is the best prospect.  He is the most logical to move to get a significant improvement at 2B or RH bat in LF.

    If not De Leon, why not Alex Wood, Oaks or De Jong, and Kazmir (paying half his salary) for Dozier.  I am not sure the Twins would like it, but they are not going anywhere with Dozier. If they have to include Chris Taylor to give them another infielder…okay.  With Kazmir and Woods, that would allow the Twins to keep Berrios at AAA and with De Jong or Oaks sufficient time to develop.  That does not make the Twins a contender, but will make them better, this year and the next couple of years. That would make De Leon the #5 on LAD, and remove some of the logjam in both starting and relief, and not hinder the farm.  Allows the Dodgers to give Calhoun two years to become a ML 2B.  Thins out the Hernandez/Taylor/Culberson/Fernandez and soon Locastro utility role. You have to thin out the trees to improve the health of the forest.

    Reply
  14. DavidLyons1

    GeorgeInnes George.. The FIRST thing you do is get rid of Kike ! Platooning is not the answer.. If The Dodgers want to salvage Clayton Kershaw’s career.. and have a viable chance to go to The World Series, then their priority is to get a run producing bat. If it’s a second baseman, then all the better. But, if not, then go with tyrading ALL those ‘ deadbeats ‘ off and compete.. !

    Reply
  15. DavidLyons1

    Jeffrotall Arodc03 I’d off up Pederson in a package to get a ‘ Bat ‘! His worth is suspect to me. Not disciplined and refuses to hit the ball for average and will never be able to hit LH pitching that way.

    Reply
  16. Dodgers Rumors: Los Angeles Inquired About Jurickson Profar | Dodgers Nation

    […] I previously wrote about Profar’s fit with the Dodgers. He was once considered a future star but those predictions have yet to come to fruition. Profar missed 2014 and 2015 with injuries and when he did play, he was underwhelming. Profar is still just 23 and displaced in the Rangers infield, so there’s reasons for both sides to make a deal. The biggest issue could be the difference in his perceived value to actual value. Profar is currently a major disappointment, but Texas has little reason to give him away. The Rangers will want value closer matched to Profar the prospect than Profar the major leaguer. […]

    Reply

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