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Dodgers Poised to Have Internal Conflict in Offseason

The Dodgers organization has some big decisions to make over the next couple months.

Andrew Friedman and Dave Roberts meeting at Dodger Stadium.

The primary question the Dodgers face this winter ‘to buy, or not to buy?’. With the MLB Winter Meetings just over a month away, will the Dodgers finally set themselves up to make that big move? Not only a move to light a fire in the clubhouse, but to reinvigorate the fan base as well… time will tell.

According to Pedro Moura of the Athletic, the Dodgers time to figure out the direction of the franchise this off-season is now.

Internal Conflict

It almost seems inevitable that the Dodgers’ front office has some sort of internal conflict — not physical or mental conflict — but conflict in terms of how to approach their future. Los Angeles needs to choose now: make the big push and bring in stars or stand pat with what they have and roll the dice.

MLB beat writer Ken Gurnick opined in October that the front office would need a “change in philosophy” to sign big free agents.

With that said, we all know which side of the coin they should flip to.

Current Construct

No doubt the team as currently constructed could contend for a World Series appearance. However, the team with major additions in the form of Anthony Rendon and/or Gerrit Cole instantly becomes a World Series favorite. Vegas currently has the Dodgers at +600 odds to win the World Series in 2020, second-best in all of baseball.

If the Dodgers happened to steal right-hander Gerrit Cole from the Houston Astros, they would surely jump the Astros in terms of World Series odds.

The Bullpen

The Dodgers’ bullpen seems poised to be comprised almost entirely of starting pitchers due to their lack of impact ‘pen arms. The only true relievers that will be locks in the bullpen heading into 2020 will be likely closer Kenley Jansen, Joe Kelly, Pedro Baez, and Adam Kolarek, along with some form of your Yimi Garcia and Casey Sadler types.

Moreover, it is entirely possible that the Dodgers trade away from their surplus of starting pitchers to make room for young top prospects like Tony Gonsolin and Dustin May, or even Mitchell White or Josiah Gray later on the 2020 campaign.

It’s Not a Want, It’s a Need

At this point in time, the Dodgers need to make a move. It is more of a need than a want. The Dodgers have already been linked to names like Anthony Rendon, Gerrit Cole, Mookie Betts, and Francisco Lindor. On the pitching side of things, it is totally possible that the Dodgers emerge as front-runners to acquire a back-end bullpen piece like the New York Mets’ Edwin Diaz or Dellin Betances in free agency.

Written by Daniel Preciado

My name is Daniel Preciado and I am 18 years old. I am a sophomore Sport Analytics major and Cognitive Science and Economics dual minor at Syracuse University. When I am not in New York, I live in Whittier, California --- not too far from Chavez Ravine. I am pretty old-school for being an analytics guy and I will always embrace debate. Also, Chase Utley did absolutely nothing wrong.

20 Comments

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  1. Are some of you authors so desperate for something to write this time of the year or what??? Cole has publicly stated, and adamantly i might ad, he will not play for any west coast team. So please sports writers, get in touch, quit wasting the readers time, and only discuss real options for us fans. Thanks!

  2. Not only does Cole not want a West coast team but we don’t need him we need a good manager

  3. It is fatiquing being a Dodger fan at times. We invest a lot of our heart, emotion and money. When the FO is so half-hearted in winning and totally committed to saving money, it makes it hard to be a fan. Sometimes we need a break. It’s way too early to figure how many games I will go to in 2020. I guarantee, I will not expect anything more than a Division title. It’s going to be about having fun at the stadium, win or lose.
    Maybe, just maybe, one day we will have an ownership committed to winning on the field not just winning in the box office.
    The local TV blackout is one example of how distressing it is to follow this team.

    • Yeah Mike it’s a small market mentality in a large market. That’s how loser towns are and teams. Kinda like the Brewers. Very small market and so close but they never think to add the main piece in Free Agency to win a WS so they settle for being just OK. We have that here. All the pieces are there to get a Rendon, Betts, Cole and some sort of help at closer. But no, it’s about the profit and bottom dollar. From what I have seen there’s a storm brewing. I can’t tell you how many different blogs videos and commentary I have seen that want Roberts gone and are fed up with the closer situation. I believe when Roberts is introduced on opening day there will be some unhappy fans and Booing like we have never seen before.

  4. The Dodgers won 106 games have a great (for them) TV deal and the most attendance in the League.
    They managed to do this while getting younger! And continue to have a top 5 Farm Team
    They will attempt and probably will sign Ryu.They will promote Urias. Don’t forget about this young phenom. They may sign Rendon but I doubt it. The only help they need is in the bullpen. I am hoping they trade Pederson and Taylor. They will win the NL West next year. And have dynamic young arms line Buehler, Urias and probably May and Gonsolin barring a trade.
    Chill out people. It’s the Karen business plan.
    They will Never win the WS with Roberts as Managér. He wants players to like him he doesn’t manage. And has no idea about strategy and using pitchers.

  5. I’m just glad at least some of the media have the huevo’s to address the most important needs of the team. Since they all want to do interviews etc.,they tend to just be mouth pieces for the FO and regurgitate talking points that don’t mean a thing. You will rarely see a writer/reporter that ever mentions the T.V. deal, or the attendance. It’s hard for the Dodgers to just admit that they made some huge mistakes in the last 3 or 4 years that have been the main reason they still haven’t brought home a trophy. They failed on J.D. Martinez, Cole, Verlander, even Price, Corbin and we could go on and on while all those players excelled and won World Series. So didn’t Friedman think these players would get us over the top like they did for the Sox, Astro’s and Nationals? Were these guys all too expensive for the team with the most attendance? I hope people call Friedman out just as they do Roberts because he missed on way too many chances so far to get over the top. Maybe some truth like this article, and more journalists speaking up for the fans will pressure the FO to finally get involved in working for us finally. It’s almost as if Kasten and Friedman are in Congress…..

  6. Great article it’s definitely a want and not a need. At this point I feel the Dodgers should just stay the course I mean who cares anymore? We’ve already lost to the point that I’m not even excited anymore I mean is anyone else? The front office has already started this train of persevering prospects for the future and so far it’s been working, that’s where we should be excited for I mean look at the Dodgers and the young core they have it’s not a total disaster. I get it the fans including myself are upset and angry because of owners unwilling to spend up when they have all the resources while blocking me from the games on t.v. But in reality the big picture is the future is bright, Verdugo, Beaty, Lux, the list goes on and on. My personal opinion is this team should have won a World Series already if it wasn’t for Dave Roberts and if they had done so we wouldn’t be talking about signing anyone. Roberts must have been part of the Dodgers future plans moving forward for the young kids or else he should have been fired already this year. But his mismanagement has cost the Dodgers. The FO has done a decent job so far and nothing is perfect, but the plan is in place the only issue is not winning the World Series while this plan was in motion. I’m curious to see what they do next, the panic button has been set but should we really be panicking? Again, at this point does it really matter if the FO does nothing, or sign anymore? At this point might as well just stay the course that chip will come sooner or later!

  7. I don’t think there will be any internal conflict at all on the Dodgers this winter. They remain on the page they have been on for the past few years. Build for the 162 and hope that they win the postseason “crapshoot.” I am sure that once again they will “assume” ‘that Kershaw, Bellinger and Seager will turn around their postseason narratives and 2020 will be different than 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.

  8. “They will promote Urias.” He is already here. What do you mean by “promote?”

    And no, they likely will let Ryu walk, which they should. He had a fine year but another injury-marred one. That is the norm for him, not the exception. The same thing goes for Rich Hill. Goodbye to both–thank you and good luck. But the Dodgers don’t need people that are available only half the year.

  9. It really doesn’t matter what the front office does. We are still stuck with Dave Roberts who needs to be sent back down to the minor.

  10. You all want to get your points across, don’t go to the games. Hurt there pocket. Whatch how fast they make a move

    • Exactly but they’ll still go because by the time spring gets here they’ll have forgotten all of their anger and sense and buy into whatever hype and also be sucked in by the stadium renovations

  11. Guys…you miss the point. The Dodgers, while disappointing me 3 years in a row, are highly successful…if you understand their metrics. The team is run by the Guggenheim Group which also manages billions of dollars for high net worth investors. Thus, the metrics are clear…put a quality product on the field that is good enough for the customers (fans if you will) and produces a positive return for investors. LA did that…led majors in attendance, signed big TV contract, etc. while winning the NL West for the seventh straight year and being under the luxury tax. All good…anything else on the field would be great but not really necessary, all metrics met. I don’t like Dave Roberts at all, I wish they would sign Rendon, Cole or anyone to help the team (they won’t, they will tinker at the edges) but with this current management don’t count on a World Series any time soon, it’s not part of the metrics…it’s just a business.

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