Fresh off a World Series win, the Dodgers are looking to lock and reload for another deep run into October next year. Of course, for 2020, Andrew Friedman landed Mookie Betts from Boston and eventually locked him up to a long-term extension.
Now the question is, will Friedman and the Dodgers be as ardent as they were last offseason as they look to improve?
The chances don’t feel as likely — at least to the caliber of a Mookie move. Still, MLB experts, writers, and insiders are doing what they can to spice up the offseason hot stove by linking LA to some of the biggest trade chips on the market. And the 2020 offseason is starting to read a lot like the 2019 version did.
In fact, once again, Indians’ star shortstop Francisco Lindor has been linked to LA. And now one baseball writer is going as far as to put together their own hypothetical package for the 4-time All-Star. Here’s the deal that gets it done in the eyes of Sarah Langs.
Dodgers get: SS Francisco Lindor
Indians get: RHP Dustin May, 1B/OF Matt Beaty, OF Cody Thomas
On paper, the proposal looks a little thin for Cleveland. Sure, Dustin May put himself on the radar in 2020, but didn’t quite firmly entrench himself on the map yet. And with Matt Beaty, if anything, he took a big step backward in 2020 thanks to the way the Dodgers utilized his talents. Or didn’t, rather. And finally, outfield prospect Cody Thomas — a star for LA last spring training (1.0) — is 30th on their top-30 prospects list. Basically, he’s not quite ready for primetime, even for a team like Cleveland that desperately needs help in the outfield.
The Indians have made their intentions known that they plan to trade Lindor, who is set to eclipse $20 M in his final year of salary arbitration. Something they aren’t willing to pay. Moreover, the 27-year-old is a free agent after the 2021 season, begging the question of whether the Dodgers would look at him as a one year rental, or as an extension candidate.
For a rental, losing May could be a bit too high of a price. If the club would explore locking him up long term, what would that mean financially for their own stars (Corey Seager, Walker Buehler, Cody Bellinger) that are looking to get paid in the next few seasons?
Chances are high that Frankie Lindor gets traded this offseason… I just wouldn’t bet much on his destination being the Dodgers.