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Dodgers Offseason: LA Could Pivot to Free Agent Outfielder Starling Marte Says MLB Insider



Consistent hitting was a big issue for the Dodgers this season. I would argue it was the biggest reason why they couldn’t pull of the division come back and why they now find themselves watching the World Series from home.

Too many times did we as fans have to witness them explode on offense in one game and looked lost at the plate the next. The Dodgers have been very home run happy over the years and have heavily relied on it to supply the run support. We don’t get to see them play small ball or steal bases much anymore. Maybe they should have, and maybe they should shift to that approach more next season.

One player who could help in that aspect is Starling Marte, who Jim Bowden of The Athletic suggested could make an impact as well. 

“Another free agent to watch is Starling Marte, who could play center field or left field for the Dodgers. He’s an on-base machine, one of the game’s best base stealers, and has 20 home run power. But Marte probably only makes sense if Seager departs and the Dodgers move Lux to second base and Turner to shortstop or if they can find a trade for Pollock.”

If the Dodgers do intend to open up the bank and open whatever it takes to retain Seager, spending money on someone like Marte doesn’t make sense. Despite having just turned 33 years old this month, Marte has shown he can still be very impactful and would cost a pretty decent amount of money. Earlier this season he reportedly was asking for a 3-4 year deal worth $50 million. So as Jim Bowden put it, he only makes sense if Seager leaves or they move  AJ Pollock. 

Why Marte would make sense

Marte finished the 2021 season with a .310 batting average, 12 home runs, 55 RBI, and 47 stolen bases between the Marlins and A’s. Having Marte at the top of the lineup alongside Trea Turner would be a nightmare for opposing teams. His ability to get into the minds of pitchers and managers is a stat you can’t measure, but its impact would be seen and felt.

Hitting is contagious, so having someone who can routinely get on base and start the party could seemingly have an effect on the rest of the lineup. Just look back at the way Turner impacted games when he first arrived. He took the fanbase by storm. If the Dodgers wanted, they could also move Marte down in the order to help drive in runs as well. While he isn’t a power hitter like Max Muncy, having someone who can put the ball in play is a difference-maker. In the event that Cody Bellinger can’t continue his postseason success, Marte would be a nice replacement.

Final Thoughts

It’s unknown whether he is on the front office’s radar, but he would make a fine addition to the team if the dominoes end up falling that way. For such a move to work, I would think both Seager and Pollock, not just one, would need to be absent from the roster.

Written by Adam Salcido

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          • Keep dreaming and stay in your fantasy world. You apparently are quite happy there.

          • You need to quit talking to yourself. I and many others check in here randomly, and there you are Invasive and barging into EVERY conversation that anyone tries to have. Whether or not your welcomed, there you are Blabbering. Recently closet worshipping the Braves. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but not you, Yours has to be the only valid one. You talk to yourself quite often when no one replies. There isn’t a second or hour that goes by that the threads don’t have your jargon spewed all over it. Now you are insulting me calling me Melvin’s wife? Grow up dude, for someone who claims to be older, act like it….

  1. “Hitting is contagious, so having someone who can routinely get on base and start the party could seemingly have an effect on the rest of the lineup.”

    Betts didn’t have that effect this season, his first full season in LA, and Trae Turner fell short of inspiration hitting when needed the most. Batting averages dropped a lot this season and I don’t believe it’s because they didn’t have any hitters with the assumed contagion. They apparently got vaccinated against HITTING.

    • Taryn, lol. Vaccine for hitting huh?

      With regards to Betts, yes it was most definitely an off year for the former WS MVP, HOWEVER, the guy spent a number of stints on the IL with a painful hip pointer. Injuries will most definitely affect hitting. If healthy in 2022, I would expect to see much better offensive production from him.

      Trea won the NL batting title, but was a disaster in the postseason…why? Beats me. Hopefully if given another opportunity, he can alter that pattern.

      • DF4, If memory serves me at all, and I’m at the age where I possibly don’t know if it does or not, Betts wasn’t hitting before he developed the hip issue. Trae could have placed added pressure on himself since others were failing to hit. No matter the reasons, watching the hitting fluctuate I felt seasick a lot of the time.

        • No doubt. It frustrated the bejesus out of me too! I kept saying to myself, how can a bunch of super talented players look this bad?

          Betts was off the whole year for sure. He would go on the IL, come back and look like he was just starting to get hot and then boom, right back on the IL again. I’m sure it had to be a very frustrating year for him. Here I am sounding like I’m trying to defend him when I was simply appalled by his post game interview following the NLCS. Oh well.

          • I took a look at Betts for April-.250, May-.244, June-.241 before his hip issue. He had a good two weeks in both July and Aug with a short .370 and .289 but dropped again in Sep to .245.
            Betts getting paid the money he gets, a .245 average shouldn’t be the result of the first 3 months of the season and close it out the last month in the same fashion. I shudder to look at the dropoffs of the others.

          • Taryn, You are one serious fan. I comment you. Betts has a history of starting off the year slow and improving with each month. Look it up for yourself. I too think the Dodgers way over-paid on him. Just typical of my favorite criticism target. Please don’t get me started on that subject. IIWII

        • Taryn, have you watched any of the World Series? Houston Cheaters are the #1 ranked offense in baseball. They got shut-out in Game 3, and scored 2 runs in Games 1 & 4…offense doesn’t win championships. It’s why Dodger teams had always been built around Pitching and Defense! Think Koufax and Drysdale. Koufax was a part of 4 World Championship teams. Drysdale 3. I really don’t understand why people struggle with this concept. The majority of the criticisms of the 2021 Dodgers all centered around the offense. It is simply looking at the wrong side of the equation!

    • I don’t see the Dodgers as making any high priced FA signings. By the sounds of it 2022 payroll looks to be considerably lower than 2021. Just my observation.

      • Things are actually going downhill for this franchise. They had their chance to have a dynasty and blew it winning only one in front of nobody and got no celebration for it with fans. Even worse than the 90’s Braves. They’ll continue having playoff seasons but title contention is over. Our Payrolls will continue going down and lots of players will be lost in the coming years. The way this team is run with the Friedman/Roberts collaboration will never net a full season championship.

        • awfully presumptuous eh Don? We don’t even know what the teams in MLB will look like next year, if there even is ANY baseball. WSS

        • Spot on Don….They made their run…….They had a chance, and it didn’t work out. Moneyball L.A. style….Computer over realization and successful techniques that had worked for over a hundred years.

          • What’s going to make things difficult for Dodgers is having all those players being free agents at the same time. And we saw how the players from Triple A here in 2021 couldn’t cut it when asked to fill in for the amazing plethora of injuries. Then we have questionable in game management and and mis management of the pitching. What may be concerning is the fact that these same things will happen again in 2022, if we have a season.

      • I think Dodgers upped the payroll in 2021 because they saw the writing on the wall that it was a golden opportunity to achieve something which hasn’t been done in over 20 years…repeat as WS Champs. They knew the window of opportunity was there and would be more challenging going forward. They aren’t that stupid. Again the CBA and the other situation will dictate just how much belt tightening will take place for 2022. All good things come to an end at some point, just the nature of the beast. Dodgers still have a great core of returnees, and while 2022’s team will look much different than this year’s version, it will more than likely still be quite competitive. Everyone else is trying to win too, well most at least lol.

        • D4life, do you envision that with a lower paroll , different looking club could miss the PS altogether for the first time since 2012? In a way with all that has and will take place I’m kind of prepared for it.

          • Paul, anything is possible. Way too early to make any kind of educated guess yet. If you told me the expected budget and any possible relief by MLB on TB, I’d have a much idea.

    • He’s a DH playing in LF. That’s where you hide your weakest defensive player.

      The most important defensive player?

      CATCHER!

  2. Folks, I’ve said here numerous times…

    Pitching and Defense win in October!

    Why? Because a HOF hitter fails 70% of the time! And every inning you don’t score, the noose gets just a bit tighter!

  3. Houston Cheaters #1 ranked offense in baseball…11 LOB! RISP not just a Dodger issue!

    DEFENSE WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS IN EVERY SPORT!

  4. My takeaway from watching the WS other than the obvious I’ve already stated.

    At least to my eyes, the Braves players “care more about each other” than the Dodgers did. It’s why I made the comment that this Dodgers team lacked team Chemistry. It appeared to me it was more a collection of individuals rather than a TEAM. Just one person’s opinion.

    Maybe because the Dodgers had so many FA’s? Could be, who knows.

    • Oh and BTW, Braves had no starting pitcher either! And don’t have one for the next either!

  5. For the fans who are disappointed in not winning the World Series…there are 29 other MLB teams trying to do the same thing. Dodgers essentially beat all but 1. I would hardly call that a failure. Did they have the ability to win the World Series? Yes, unfortunately it didn’t happen. Try again next year.

  6. ASSUMIMG BRAVES BEAT TRASHTROS DO YOU REALIZE WHOEVER WINS THE WORLD SERIES HAS TO BEAT LA DODGERS. WISE MOVES: Alek Wood and Rich Hill back as Dodgers. Joc Peterson Back. If Seager bails go hard after Freeman of the Braves. DH Nelson Cruz – Keep Pollack- Muncy can play first, 2nd or third. Just Turner will need lots of rest. NOT SURE WHERE TREA TURNER FITS IN THE LONG RUN BUT WE GOT HIM FOR ANOTHER YEAR. Hope we resign Kersh and Sherzer and Kenley but it will come down to money. Wright might be a legit starter as will Bobby MIller. Not sure what happened to Gonsolin had high hopes for him. AND LIKE EVERYONE SAYING A MUST RESIGN CHRIS TAYLOR.

  7. Fun fact, since 2016 every team that knocked the Dodgers out of the playoffs has won the World Series (Cubs, Asterisks, Red Sox, Nationals, Braves?).

    More often than not the hottest playoff team wins, not necessarily the one with the most talent.

    That being said, I am very disappointed our starting pitching wasn’t the difference I thought it would be, even with only 3 starters.

    Last year we sort of copied the Red Sox use of substituting a starter for a relief pitcher, mainly because said pitcher was a much better option than a relief pitcher you no longer trusted. We absolutely didn’t need to do that this year. I can’t recall a time where you could argue that all 8 relief pitchers were trustable. The only pitcher I dreaded seeing was Price (and maybe Gonsolin).

    DR and the staff overthought the situation when deploying Scherzer and Urias (and perhaps when using Buehler on short rest). The thought of all the bullpen games was really annoying during the regular season when it seemed like we had 8 potential starters (before injuries), but we won most of those bullpen games. I feel like if we trusted our relievers, our starters would have had enough left in the tank to perform to their capabilities.

    Should be an interesting hot stove.

  8. time to let clayton kershaw , kenley jensen,justin turner, and seager go … its time for mookie and julio and walker to take over // we need to turn the page , and keep religion out of the club house … Cody needs a need new group dynamic … if we do this alone , we will have at least 4 more rings by the time mookie retires ..

  9. On base machine??? LOL Not at Dodger Stadium for his career, and not anywhere else before this year. His career OBP before 2021 was .341

  10. Well our stupid MGMT at it again ! They told Kershaw to take a hike and Corey Seager that he can go to highest bidder and of course Taylor will go for a starting job with a team that needs him and he knows dumb roberts will not offer him the job.We’ll have to see Kershaw go to hall of fame with different cap.Seager having MVP seasons for Yankees and Taylor playing Gold Glove defense at second or centerfield.

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