Pitchers and catchers are set to report for Spring Training on the 17th. And yet, the Dodgers still find themselves without a true starting third baseman or the right-handed bat they’ve talked about adding in the offseason.
That bat would presumably be Justin Turner, a guy that has been a huge part of the organization’s success since 2014. And at no point during this offseason has any team other than the Dodgers been reported to be the favorite to sign the veteran.
For now, that still remains true as we get closer to the start of Spring Training. The latest report from Jon Heyman is that JT’s decision could be down to just 2 teams, with as many as 5 teams in on him at one point or another.
Those 2 teams are the Dodgers and the Brewers. Milwaukee signed Kolten Wong to a 2-year deal that would have presumably taken them out of the running for Turner. But the team views him as an upgrade over some of the options they have now, and having him as a DH option after 2021 could be worth having him signed this year.
The Dodgers are still the favorites, but there is no reason to believe Milwaukee could not pull it off. The way that Milwaukee structured Wong’s contract defers $5 million this year alone, freeing up cash for Turner. They would presumably have to put together a pretty good package to pull him away from Los Angeles, but they definitely have the money to do it.
The only real question seems to be what the Dodgers are willing to do to bring him back. The general feeling is that there is no desperation in their front office to bring him back, and rightfully so. Los Angeles has the pieces to be able to move on from JT, but they would obviously like a reunion at the right cost.
The clock is ticking…
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