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Dodgers Can Move on Big Name Players, But Are They Willing to Take a Risk?

We’ve seen this play out before.



After recent years of laying low on the free agent market, this is finally the year the Dodgers are poised to make a splash. They’ve been linked to some of the top free agents available such as Anthony Rendon, Stephen Strasberg, and Gerrit Cole. If that doesn’t work out, they can still trade for guys like Mookie Betts or Francisco Lindor. This off-season should be different than years past.

The only thing is, that’s what people have been saying for the past few off-seasons now. Bill Plunkett, in his latest column for the OC Register, reminds us that we’ve seen the exact scenario play out for the last three years now.

Plunkett reminds Dodger fans of last year when the Dodgers were locks to either sign Bryce Harper or trade for JT Realmuto and Corey Kluber.

The same thing happened in 2017 when the Dodgers were in the running for Shohei Ohtani and linked to trades for Giancarlo Stanton or Christian Yelich.

Plunkett noted that the last time the Dodgers signed a marquee free agent was when former GM Ned Colletti signed Zack Greinke in 2012. Andrew Friedman’s biggest off-season acquisition? Yasmani Grandal in 2014.

Every Friedman Off-Season Acquisition

We know the Dodgers and Friedman have had no problem going all-out for their own free agents, notably re-signing Rich Hill, Kenley Jansen, and Justin Turner to big extensions after the 2016 season, but they have yet to land a top free agent.

Friedman told Plunkett that while he isn’t opposed to any form of acquiring players, he feels it is “important to maintain some discipline” to find the best deal for the team.

“I think for us, and I know it sounds like a cliché, but we really don’t have any hard-and-fast rules. We’re not opposed to any form of player acquisition. I think it’s just important to maintain some discipline whether it’s on the trade front or the free-agent market to find what works best for us.”

But Plunkett pointed out that just three years ago, Friedman said the exact opposite.

“If you’re always rational about every free agent, then you will finish third on every free agent,” Friedman said in 2016.

So like the veteran writer said, it’s not a question of if the Dodgers can make a move, the real question is are the Dodgers — specifically Andrew Friedman — willing to take a risk on the free agent or trade market?

Written by Andres Soto

Comments

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  1. Friedman will not take a chance on high priced FA’s. If Dodgers make big changes it will come via trade.

    • So now the big excuse is taking chances with Friedman! The only chance Friedman has been taking is taking no chances at all. There is absolutely 0 , yes 0 professional sports franchises that have won championships fielding ONLY Farm talent. Chances my my!!! Every year we watch the Astro’s, Red Sox,Yanks and most recently the Nats take Chances while we talk about next year, and the future! The future is NOW….. Chances? LMAO!

        • Paul, by reading a few of these replies apparently 6 division titles, 2 World series Losses and a strong farm are much more important than a World Championship. People refer to this teams success as sustainable. Every time I hear the Koolaid drinkers excuses, and the 33 year drought rears it’s ugly head, I realize that some folks think the old everyone get’s a trophy mantra is alive and well at Chavez Ravine…The Dodgers are not only experts in analytics and shifts, but also innovators in creating a Socialist mindset in the fan base.

        • Paul I replied to you but once again my post was Facebooked. Guess I shouldn’t have said the Dodgers run the team like Socialists. Everyone get’s a trophy..

          • Kirk, some of my comments don’t make it on the page here but you are correct, and by Freidman talking about how the team would ‘still be fine’ without any player moves says it all about how little management is phased by 3 straight PS eliminations on their home field.

    • Imagine that. 6 straight division titles. 2 out of last three world series. 106 wins last year. Best attendance in baseball. And all without big name free agents! How can that be. I’m just spitballing here, but maybe it’s because they recognize and develop talent in their own system, which also allows them to avoid the MLB luxury tax. They didn’t buy last year’s NL MVP, they brought him through their own system. With that said, would I like to see Rendon, Cole, Strasbourg, Lindor, or Betts in Dodger blue? Of course. Who wouldn’t? Any one of those players, could be the difference between going to a world series, and winning it.

      • The Houston Astros are the enigma to me. They are consitently loaded with talent and still manage to trade for guys like Verlander, Greinke, and Alvarez (at Dodgers expense), without giving up much (the Dodgers got Josh Fields for Alvarez, great trade huh). I think the Astros hypnotize their trading partners. But they do it through trades, not big name free agents. And they are frequent fliers to the world series. I still don’t know why the Padres ponied up millions for Machado last year. He didn’t earn it. Neither did Harper. But the Padres will still be contenders in the near future, because they still have alot of Tatis/Paddock caliber talent in their system. Who knows, Machado may even contribute something someday too.

      • “Best attendance in baseball.” Exactly.
        Plus the eight BILLION dollars Time Warner deal.
        Why would the Dodgers need a WS title? For pride? LOL. MLB is a business. Fans go to games, business professionals run them. No businessman will spend 100 million over 10 million for the same profit.
        The 100 million in stadium remodeling is for more profit. See, they have the means, but why?

        • Thank you mike. This “Dodgers106wins” guy always sounds like someone sent from ownership. You always speak the truth

  2. The Dodgers need to quit looking at every free agent on the market, and resign Ryu, sign Cole, then look for a quality relief pitcher. End of story.

  3. Need a right handed hitter with power, that’s the 3rd baseman from the Nationals I hope they go after him.

    • Also need a reliable closer, a Lead off hitter, another shut down starter to pair with Buehler, another back up catcher that hits more than 220. A few more as well

  4. I have said this over and over. Until the big losers Freidman and Roberts get fired our Dodgers are going nowhere. The only people Freidman brings in are his past loser butt buddies and same thing every year these 2 losers in charge Dodgers go down fast and made a joke of. And the only people we have to blame for this are the dumb ass owners who dont give a shit about us fans and only the money. I have not gone to a dodger game since these 2 losèrs took over and i will not till they get fired.FIRE FIRE LOSER FREIDMAN AND ROBERTS.

  5. It’s always the DODGERS are in the running or in talks for a top of the line free agent, but, never get to the final stages where we’re close to picking someone up. Friedman either knows how to sound good through the negotiating process or really doesn’t want to add a marque player. See ya COLE, RENDON and LINDOR…

  6. We are always in the running fir players and then another team signs them. For Freidman to admit he thought we had Greinke and thinking Roberts did a great job in the playoffs is laughable, maybe he is in way over his head. Roberts blew that game laat year we had that game won!! Get rid of them boffe!!

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