Shortly after ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers franchise transferred to the hands of the Guggenheim Partners, a blockbuster trade was completed with the Boston Red Sox to add over $200 million in salary.
The Dodgers have aggressively spent since — signing Zack Greinke to a lucrative contract and making Clayton Kershaw the highest-paid pitcher in MLB history. With a payroll that leads the Majors and is in excess of $230 million, the Dodgers may be big spenders come winter.
According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, baseball executives have identified the Dodgers among three teams whom San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval may sign with as a free agent:
Nonetheless, most major league executives we’ve talked to believe Sandoval will wind up with a five-year deal worth about $100 million. That could be with the Red Sox, Yankees, or Dodgers.
The Dodgers have of course signed a third baseman away from the Giants as they lured Juan Uribe down Interstate 5 with a three-year, $21 million contract. At the time, Uribe was 32 years old and he largely struggled through the first two years of the deal.
Uribe put together a well-time successful season in 2013, hit the decided home run in Game 4 of the National League Division Series, and signed a two-year, $15 million contract in the off-season. Sandoval would come to the Dodgers at the age of 28, but with concerns regarding his weight.
In April, Giants general manager Brian Sabean said contract extension talks were shelved. Sabean’s comments came one month after Sandoval reportedly turned down a three-year, $40 million offer. Sandoval drove in the tying run in the ninth inning of the Giants’ NLDS Game 2 against the Washington Nationals and the Giants went on to win the game in 18 innings.
The Venezuelan native has reached the postseason three times in his seven years with the Giants and is a .313 hitter with 16 RBIs. While Sandoval would be a natural replacement for Uribe, the Dodgers’ front office personnel have intimated the spending spree wouldn’t be an ongoing trend.
With Corey Seager in the organization, whom some believe should transition from shortstop to third base given his size, that may be a more attractive option for the purportedly soon-to-be cost-conscious Dodgers. They could also re-sign Justin Turner, who has played well in a utility infielder/bench player role this season.