AM 570’s David Vassegh spoke to President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman recently and he gave some important insight on what the team is looking to do as the Trade Deadline approaches.
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Vassegh started the conversation off by asking if the Dodgers club has exceeded the front office’s expectations. Friedman responded with this:
Having as talented of a team as we have, we were expecting good things to happen. Obviously good things have happened.
The Dodgers have the best record in baseball, and pace the National League by a wide margin.
When discussing the dynamic of the team in the clubhouse, Friedman explained what we already know — the team is full of some fantastic men:
The dynamic among the group — and I don’t just mean that they are just a bunch of nice guys, which they are — there is edge to them, there is grit to them, there is fight in them. I have been around a lot of really good teams but this one is my favorite.
Friedman has fielded numerous fantastic teams in his history as a front office executive and the fact that this is his most professional squad he has ever assembled is more than awesome to hear.
Hyun-Jin Ryu and the Starting Rotation
When asked about the plan for Hyun-Jin Ryu to make sure he stays healthy, Friedman explained the care and precautionary measures the organization takes to ensure the health of the MLB leader in earned run average:
It is one of those things that we watch outing to outing. If stuff starts to dip at all, it suggests fatigue so it is something we are mindful of. At the same time, we do not set arbitrary numbers or limits on guys.
Vassegh also asked about the second-half plan for current reliever Julio Urías and Friedman demonstrated excitement for what he has done:
It would have been really easy to really limit his innings this year by having him be a tradition reliever. It also would have been really easy for him to blow past and throw caution to the wind. The hardest part is finding that middle ground and putting him in position to impact and help us win games while also building his innings in a thoughtful way. It is more art than science.
We want him to be in our rotation and to be on the same kind of plan as Walker Buehler was in 2018. There is definitely a chance he impacts us in the rotation [this year] down the stretch.
A lot to unpack there, but the Dodgers’ front office remains open-minded about the future and usage of Julio Urías.
The most intriguing part of the interview with Friedman discussing the plan for the Trade Deadline now that there is no August deadline anymore:
The Wild Card is packed. Hopefully the teams that fall back are the owners of the some of the guys that fit us well.
Guys like Felipe Vazquez from the Pirates and Brad Hand from the Indians fit this well. A lot of teams are on the bubble and there are lots of guys that could become available in the eleventh hour of the deadline. Fully expect AF and Co. to make a move.