in

Dodgers News: Bowden Talks Francisco Lindor to LA Trade Possibilities

The more you hear you Lindor to LA, the more you like it… until you start to see who could be leaving LA.

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 14: Francisco Lindor #12 of the Cleveland Indians looks on during the second game of a doubleheader against the Minnesota Twins on September 14, 2019 at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images)

When it comes to the baseball hot stove, the Dodgers have been linked to just about every premium name out there. From pundits calling out Los Angeles as the new home of free agent third baseman Anthony Rendon, to industry experts believing the club will pursue Gerrit Cole, the Dodgers are widely expected to make a big move this winter.

One of the biggest moves potentially on the board is a trade for Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor. Moreover, Lindor was just the name that former MLB GM Jim Bowden was again talking about at The Athletic on Monday.

The insider notes that as much as Cleveland would love to hold on to Lindor, there is an understanding that “a quarter of their payroll going to one player is not a good formula for winning.” The four-time All-Star can’t be a free agent until the 2021-2022 off-season. He earned nearly $11M in 2019 and is projected to get a bump up to around $16.7M, according to MLB Trade Rumors.

With a trade being the best option to keep Cleveland competitive, and within their budget restraints in the coming years, Bowden identifies three potential trade possibilities.

Along with the Dodgers, the former GM lists the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies as trade partners. For LA, Bowden starts with the obvious elephant in the room… it takes two to tango. And that means that Andrew Friedman and company would need to part with a high profile prospect to get the talks started.

The Dodgers would have to include their top shortstop prospect, Gavin Lux, if they want to acquire Lindor in a trade, and that’s reportedly something they don’t want to do. To include Lux in a deal, they need to extend Lindor at the time of the trade. I don’t think Lux would get Lindor straight up, so LA would have to put one other solid prospect in the trade, like catcher Keibert Ruiz (who’s arguably expendable because of Will Smith).

Now, this is something that most Dodger fans don’t really want to think about, but in a trade involving Lindor — or even Mookie Betts from Boston — conversations start at Gavin Lux and add on from there. Lux was LA’s minor league player of the year in 2019, and someone they were steadfast in holding on to at last season’s trade deadline.

Additionally, he’s a shortstop and the Indians would need a replacement for Lindor at the position.

The Kluber Connection

Now buckle up, because Bowden wasn’t done.

If LA is fortunate enough to make the trade without Lux, then it almost assuredly would have to replace him in the trade with either outfielder Alex Verdugo or pitcher Tony Gonsolin. This type of deal could also get expanded to include starting pitcher Corey Kluber in the trade going to Los Angeles.

Kluber to LA is a move that peppered headlines much of last off-season. The 33 year-old, two-time AL Cy Young award winner missed much of the 2019 season with injuries. However, he was a 20-game winner as recently as 2017 and owns a lifetime 3.16 ERA with a 2.99 FIP over 9 seasons.

While it’s not ideal for the Dodgers to stock up on 30-something former Cy Young winners in the rotation, but a healthy and effective Kluber does fill another need the club has. A front-end arm to mix in with Walker Buehler and Clayton Kershaw. Additionally, Kluber can be under team control through the 2021 season on two team options totaling $35.5M.

Acquiring the 3-time All-Star would effectively spell the end of Hyun-Jin Ryu’s time in LA.

Final Thoughts

While fans are clamoring for names like Rendon and Cole, an off-season haul of Lindor and Kluber may very well be labeled a win for the Dodgers. Moreover, the acquisition of Lindor allows the club to slide Corey Seager to third base — a position experts have called for since his debut — and Justin Turner to move to first base. A clear path would be paved for Max Muncy to take the lion’s share at second base, and for Cody Bellinger to resume his Gold Glove ways in the outfield.

However, at the cost of some mix of two or three of Lux, Ruiz, Gonsolin, and Verdugo, it would be a big hit to the farm system.

Written by Clint Pasillas

Clint is the lead editor of Dodgers Nation, and a host and analyst on Dodgers Nation's own Blue Heaven podcast live stream.

He's been writing, blogging, and podcasting Dodgers since about 2008. He was there for Nomar, Greg Maddux, and Blake DeWitt, and he'll be there for Walker Buehler, Alex Verdugo, Dustin May, and any Dodgers of the future.

He's also a sandwich enthusiast, a consummate athlete, and a friend.

24 Comments

Leave a Reply
  1. Lux no, but everyone else in that scenario yes. I have been calling for this trade for a long time. My version goes Seager, Ruiz and Pederson, Gray and Gonsolin for Lindor/ Kluber.

  2. Neither Cleveland nor Boston is in as strong a position as suggested here. Boston has 1 year of Betts and will have to move a lot of salary to keep him and stay below the tax. He wants Trout money. Cleveland has 2 years of Lindor and they know they can’t keep him in any scenario. He too will cost a great deal.
    On the other hand, Lux is as near a can’t miss impact bat as you can get and has 6 years of control. I don’t see him in anything for Betts and it needs to be straight up for Lindor which Cleveland won’t do. I think Cleveland makes another run with Lindor in their weak division next year and gets what they can for him the next.

    • Bum I agree with you on all counts.
      Plus Bowden is usually wrong about the Dodgers, He had them getting Harper, Hamels, Verlander etc. He has proven not to be a reliable source. Not to mention he is a complete jerk….
      Lux’s accomplishments in the Minors make him as close to a can’t miss as possible and he is turning just 23 this Nov 23rd I will bet the Dodgers will not trade Lux or Seager. The Dodgers need to insist Seager go to 3rd moving Lux at short and Muncy at 2nd with Turner at 1st. That should be a much improved infield with Smith as Catcher than 2019. Plus they can stop all of the platooning and let guys settle.

      • Seager will eventually move to 3rd but I’m not sold on Lux at short yet. His bat plays but he had the yips last year and I’d need to see him play for a while before moving Seager. If the team is worried about Turner’s defense, I’d swap him with Muncy to start. Muncy – for whom I have nothing but praise – raised his defense considerably last year, wasn’t bad on 3rd, and I’d expect a similar improvement next.
        The team still needs an impactful RH bat as Turner, Smith, and Pollack are a little light and I wouldn’t mind seeing Betts even for 1 year but it would have to be a salary dump deal. Something like Betts and Eovaldi to get Boston under the tax in return for Dodger expendable parts like Pederson and Ruiz. We’ll see how it goes.

          • I’ve heard that too but I’m not sure where it started or if it’s accurate. Seager appears to be a low key low maintenance type and, while I could understand his desire to remain at short, I don’t see him making a stink or becoming a distraction if asked to move.

      • I also agree here as far as Bowden is concerned and we also know from past off seasons that if players, FA’s or otherwise have not resided in the dumpsterbin, they will not be signing here and you ahve mentioned one of thiose reasons….his name is roberts, and while we would like to think that with that INF set up you suggested would eliminate the need for platooning Ijust don’t see that happening either because again, several current players cannot hit well enough with both LH and RH

        • Oddly enough for their careers, Turner hits RHP slightly better and Muncy hits LHP slightly better so neither should be a platoon player. Seager has a modest dip against LHP but not enough to suggest he shouldn’t play every day. It’s too early to say for certain whether Lux can hit LHP in the majors but he looks promising. Really all of them should be every day players. I think Roberts platoons them to give his bench some ABs.

  3. All BS,Dodgers not making trades,they’re fine they won 106 games,all they need is a good manager.

    • Well, that ‘good ‘ manager is not going to be here in 2020. Many might suggest that Roberts is a good manager as a result of winning 106 games and winning the division in the 4 years he’s been here, but we all know where that completely falls by the waste side…in October.

  4. Rendon for a second round draft pick only ( plus some international dollars) seems a safer bet then the loss of 3-4 major league ready/competent players. Now if they would be foolish enough to take Pollock, along with say, Ruiz and Gray or Pederson for Lindor, push the button. Muncy has played first, second and third so why not try him in left as he has shown some versatility

  5. If all Cleveland wants is Lux and Ruiz for Lindor, the Dodgers need to make that trade immediately. Lux has potential, sure, but Lindor is still young and is one of the premier players in the game. Ruiz is expendable.

  6. I will just copy here what I posted on the Seager a trade candidate page:
    Wow! I just wish all these so called MLB pundits would just stop with all this nonsense! It is getting because we ALL know Seager won’t be moved and we ALL know that no top FA’s on this year’s market will NOT be signing with he Dodgers Enough of these rumors already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • AZUL, every other day its a new rumor, and most of them are silly and frivolous. And, like you stated, what top FA’s want to sign an organization that platoons as frequently as we do.? IMHO, as long as this practice continues, LA will become known as the place where careers go to die. To all of my Dodger fans, think back to when we were actually winning World Series : we had set lineups up under Alston and Lasorda. Friedman needs to work on deals that will reduce the number of outfielders currently on the roster, improve the BP, and obtain a RHB. Moving players around the diamond on a daily basis achieves little. Go Blue!!!!

  7. Great comments but Friedman will do what he wants. All the comments are basically wishes! Let’s see what happens. The players have feelings and seeing their names involved in trades does affect their egos.

  8. All these names being mentioned are nothing but wishful thinking at this time. Nothing’s going to happen until the winter meetings at the earliest and I seriously doubt even then. I’m more inclined to think the waiting will go until Feb.1.

  9. the dodgers do not need lindor they ave segar who will probably have a better year in 2020 don’t forget he was coming off tommy john surgery and had missed a lot of time

  10. How about Lux, Gonsolin, and Peterson for Lindor (if he agrees to a contract extension) and Kluber. The Dodgers move Seager to second base. If they get Rendon, put him at third and Turner at first. Bellinger, Pollock, and Verdugo in the OF with Taylor, and Kike backing up IF and OF.

  11. WAIT FOR THE WINTER MEETINGS TO HAPPEN , everyone mentions Lindor and Kluger ,sounds good right……WRONG kluger 33 years old, arm problems last year !!! What has been happening to 30+ pitchers , problems , problems , problems Kluger would be no better , the Dodgers need a solid ace ,our infield got us through 2019 successfully and will do it again ,the manager is a problem , nice guy but where do they usually finish ???????

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Dodgers: Yasiel Puig Tells Pantone 294 that LA Was Suspicious of Astros Cheating

Dodgers: Corey Seager Identified as Trade Candidate by MLB Pundit