The Justin Turner sweepstakes might be coming to an end pretty soon. While the Dodgers are still in on him as always, there are 4 total teams that have been reported to be in on him. Jon Heyman already clarified that the Blue Jays were one of them, but that left room for speculation.
We broke down the 5 teams that make the most sense to sign Justin Turner, and the Dodgers top the list. But the remaining 4 might not be far behind if they can top the contract length.
#1 Los Angeles Dodgers
The most logical and still the most likely scenario is that JT returns to the Dodgers. It’s where he rebuilt his entire career and became a hero, so the chances of him wanting to leave seem incredibly low. The chances are so low that it seems like a team would have to make Turner an offer that he could not turn down in order to pull him out of Los Angeles.
#2 Toronto Blue Jays
The Blue Jays are a young team that seems like they’re here to compete. After making the playoffs in 2020, Toronto added a few big names in George Springer, Kirby Yates, and Tyler Chatwood. Their infiled look is currently set to have Vladamir Guerrero Jr trying out 3B, but don’t have much depth beyond him. Adding JT into the mix and teaming him up with his old Dodgers teammates could end up being a huge boost when the postseason comes around.
#3 Atlanta Braves
Any team in the National League looking to add Turner would likely need the assurance that the universal DH will be around. If that is the case, the Braves could look to add JT in place of Marcell Ozuna. Turner could DH at a much cheaper cost than the contract Ozuna is likely to demand and can fill in at the hot corner when needed. The Braves saw what he is capable of with their own eyes in the NLCS, so maybe they try their luck adding him into the mix.
#4 New York Mets
Turner going back to the place that cut him just seems like a great career arc, and maybe that’s the only reason the Mets make sense. But after missing out on Justin Turner and Enrique Hernandez, maybe New York pivots to the established veteran to turn their luck around. Again, the DH would have to be a part of the NL, but signing JT could make for a fairly lethal and balanced lineup.
#5 Washington Nationals
The Nationals never really found a way to replace Anthony Rendon at the hot corner when he signed with the Angels. Carter Kieboom got the bulk of the starts there in 2020, but he is young and still unproven at the Major League level. Adding in the flexibility of JT along with the universal DH could allow them to shuffle their lineup and get guys off of their feet. Ryan Zimmerman will likely do most of the DH’ing in 2021 now that Josh Bell is at first, but JT could still be an option to add.
The truth is, any team would be lucky to have Justin Turner in their lineup. The Dodgers have benefited not only from his skill as a player on the field, but his leadership in the clubhouse is unlike anything that is available in any player on the market.
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