Sometimes the best hand you play is the one you fold, or something to that effect. In this case, it’s been the Los Angeles Dodgers’ ability to hang onto their prospects. Furthermore, these prospects have gone on to become the dominant young core of players you see on a daily basis today.
Therefore, we have Molly Knight to thank over at The Athletic. Knight writes one of the more interesting articles I’ve read in a while – focusing on the hindsight of the trades the Dodgers did not make.
The Dodgers have been hesitant to give up prospects under president Andrew Friedman, and it's paying off. @molly_knight looked back at some of the trades they DIDN'T make – which helped get the Dodgers where they are now. https://t.co/Xn3OlrcNqY
— The Athletic (@TheAthleticLA) June 8, 2019
Let’s examine a few of these that were tabled that the Dodgers didn’t do. Admittedly, I forgot half of these.
- Joc Pederson and Corey Seager for 1.5 seasons of David Price (2014)
- Pederson, Seager, and Julio Urias for four years of Cole Hamels (2014)
- Same trio for Jose Fernandez (2015)
- Alex Verdugo for Brad Hand or JD Martinez rentals (2017)
- Cody Bellinger for J.T. Realmuto (2018)
- Pederson to the White Sox for someone (2019)
Still, there are more that I didn’t mention; but you get the general drift. The Dodgers have missed several large icebergs of disaster by hanging on to their young players rather than being a prisoner of the moment and trading the guys who are producing winning baseball year over year as cornerstones.
Without giving the entire article away, I want to highlight the premise of Knight’s piece; and admit that sometimes the front offices of a MLB team simply know better.
Without question, Andrew Friedman and his staff have earned this designation. Whatever system they employ to decide upon a trade or a thumbs down – it has worked. Moreover, it’s important to remember at this deadline and in the future that sometimes the best move you make is the one you don’t at all.
I definitely wanted the Dodgers to do whatever it took to get Brad Hand back in 2017. Now, would Brad Hand have won them that title in the 2017 World Series? Maybe. However, without it being a certainty; I am enjoying watching Verdugo swing it on an every day basis and will like watching him be part of several possible championship clubs.
Hindsight is always 20/20 on trades, and you can’t evaluate who won a trade until several years out. Knight’s article over at The Athletic is an awesome reminder of what could have been, and not in a way that leaves you wishful.