The Dodgers finally made a splash (read: ripple) in the free agent waters by signing Scott Kazmir Wednesday afternoon. Many think they aren’t done quite yet.
The obviously place to start would probably be with a right arm in the rotation or second baseman. The Dodgers seem content with what they have as Corey Seager’s double-play partners, but remain connected to options who throw from the right side.
This terrifically talented and tough right-hander showed last year that he could succeed in a hitters’ park in the American League, which opened things up for him. The Astros, Royals and Orioles — three AL teams — have been known to be in the hunt for a while, the Blue Jays checked in recently and the Dodgers still make sense (though they seem intent on keeping that draft pick, even if it’s pick No. 26).
Part of the appeal with Kazmir was how the Dodgers stand to gain a pick if he leaves via free agency by not having to give up said pick to sign him. The Dodgers were willing to part with a pick in order to sign Hisashi Iwakuma before his physical went sideways, though, so if they see value in Gallardo than Maeda, it wouldn’t shock me to see them go in that direction.
Maeda comes with a $20 million posting fee, which most consider a mere bump in the road for the cash-heavy Dodgers, but if I had to bet on the situation, I’d wager that whoever is willing to sign for less money between Gallardo and Maeda winds up in Los Angeles.
Next up on Heyman’s radar is Alex Gordon, who doesn’t seem to make sense, but, given the Dodgers’ policy of calling basically everyone who is ever available, the connection is fairly easy to make.
The Royals made a four-year offer (Jim Bowden of ESPN reported it to be for about $12 million to $13 million a year), and afterward, word came from Gordon’s camp to Kansas City that as things stood then the Royals had “no chance” to retain their star left fielder. The Cardinals, Angels, Dodgers, White Sox and Orioles all have been tied to Gordon, with the Angels, White Sox and Orioles all believed to favor a lefty bat like Gordon.
Personally, Gordon terrifies me having watch Carl Crawford last season and head into 2016 with two more years and $40 million still owed to him. Gordon is phenomenal defensively but older than you’d think (he turns 32 in February). Offensively, he’s nothing particularly special and doesn’t steal enough bases for someone who’s never hit 25 homers in a season.
Given the contract he already turned down to return to a World Series champion, Gordon won’t come cheap, either. As Kasten said, they reach out to literally everyone at least once to test the waters, but that doesn’t necessarily mean every rumor or connection is worth noting. This feels like a call was made and they moved on rather quickly given all the factors at work with Gordon.
In order for the Dodgers to even consider making a move in the outfield, Andre Ethier and/or Crawford have to go and, even then, given the youth movement currently going on within the organization, it wouldn’t shock me at all to see Trayce Thompson, Joc Pederson and Yasiel Puig in the outfield simultaneously at some point in 2016.