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Dodgers Rumors: Los Angeles Made Contact With Power Hitting First Baseman

The Los Angeles Dodgers are searching far and wide for options that will get them over the proverbial hump in 2019. In this case, one of those options is Chicago White Sox slugger Jose Abreu.

Per our friend Michael Duarte of NBC Sports Los Angeles, the Dodgers have contacted the White Sox regarding Abreu.

The vitals of this are such:

  • Abreu is 31 years of age.
  • He is coming off a season in which he posted career lows in home runs, OPS, batting average, games played, and on base percentage.
  • Abreu will be a free agent following the 2020 season.

Based on this – and the fact that the White Sox are going to want significant prospect capital in any deal – I don’t know how good the fit may be. Unquestionably, the Dodgers have the prospects to pull this off should they want to. They boast four prospects within the top-100 in baseball: outfielder Alex Verdugo, catcher Keibert Ruiz, right-handed pitcher Dustin May and middle infielder Gavin Lux.

At least one of those guys would figure to be the centerpiece of the deal. Another aspect worth examining: the Dodgers have three players who are first baseman. Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, and David Freese somewhat share that corner as a primary position. What this could mean – is that Max Muncy would be a potential piece going back to the White Sox.

However, why would the Dodgers elect to trade a left-handed Muncy who is cheaper and more productive for Abreu? As questions and speculation abound; we can only deliver what is being floated out there at the current time.

Duarte has been a dependable source on items like this in the past.

What are your thoughts? Is Abreu a good fit for the current Dodgers?

[button color=”blue” size=”big” alignment=”center” rel=”follow” openin=”samewindow” url=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/2018-dodgers-player-reviews-max-muncy-ce1110/2018/12/05/”]2018 Player Reviews: Max Muncy[/button]

Written by Clint Evans

Clint lives in Ohio, and played collegiate baseball. He loves the Dodgers due to his first memories of Chavez Ravine when he was nine years old. The voice of Vin Scully has been a staple in his life since he was a kid. No amount of baseball talk is ever enough, and he wishes the regular season was year round. He has written about baseball online since 2007.

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  1. That answer is pretty simple. The Dodgers know they need a more balanced line-up against left handed pitching. They need to add more impact right handed bats. Not quite sure how I feel about Abreu, but it’s fun to ponder.

      • That is real stupid when you have Muncy and Bellinger but then again. Mgmt does dumb things like signing Roberts for 4 years cause he does what Friedman tells him to do Dodgers are paying two salaries to manage the team.Time for Magic to his head out of his ass and fire both Roberts and Friedman and sign Sciocia or Bochy they know how to win a world series.

    • Muncy. could move to second. He’s not a good glove candidate but he’s a shade below average and can only get better the key is shedding Kemp’s salary and try to land a front line starter and maybe Robertson. Adding Bryce would mean a ton of left hand hitters including Harper, Muncy, Bellinger, Pederson, Seager and possibly Grandal — not what they want.

    • Most would prefer Bellinger be at his gold glove position FULL TIME, including me! Him having to go back and forth each night IS IMHO affecting his offense some way. I say trade Muncy, he is expendable and that would relieve at least a bit of the log jam in the OF with Bellinger going back to 1st.

  2. Wow talk about out of Left Field…So the thought is they are so desperate for a right handed bat they will trade a guy that is older and had a down year for a good prospect? Makes no sense to me…
    They need to address the Outfield situation with too many average players…Plus they need to hopefully trade some Rotational Starters as they have way too many under contract and several more ready to bring up in Urias and Santana. Plus they have Stripling and Ferguson.
    The question for this year is what do they do with Muncy? If he can play 2nd base and they move Bellinger to center then Abreu makes sense. Otherwise not so much…

    • Muncy is a defensive liability wherever he plays, so I’m fine with trading him. He is unlikely to repeat what he did this year. I would also move Taylor s he seems to be unable to adjust his HR swing to reduce Ks and take advantage of his speed. Wood should go to. Delivery is too quirky and we don’t really need him.

  3. Puig, Brock Stewart, and Ed Rios to the Chisox for Abreu and Carlos Rodon who are immediately flipped to the Rays along with Yimi Garcia for backup catcher Michael Perez, 2b/SS Daniel Robertson, and relief pitcher Ryne Stanek.

    • I suspect they want a more seasoned catcher, until Ruiz is ready. Robertson is probably not even an upgrade over Taylor or Hernandez and why do you want to move Puig? Stanley would be a good pickup. Could send excess from SP and OFers for him. Wood and Toles? Or Rios.

      • Perez is considered a plus defensive catcher with quick pop times and strong arm which he has used to control running game at every level and he hit well for Rays last season (albeit less than 100 plate appearances). Robertson at 2b (or SS if Seager is not ready at start of season) allows Dodgers to move Taylor to LF, or used in a trade. Or Robertson is flipped to another team. Puig? Get what you can for him now as I don’t believe team will sign him to an extension when he becomes a FA after 2019 season.

  4. The Dodgers need to get rid of the outfield logjam. Pederson and Kiki are totally unnecessary unless they want cheap fielders which may be the case. This interest says there’s some other deal in the works getting rid of Muncy or Bellinger for something else. I would hope they could get Kluber but that one isn’t looking too possible. Puig Pederson and Kiki to Cleveland for Kluber maybe throw in Rios too.

    • Abreu is a 32 year old first baseman, coming off a disappointing season, is a below average defensive first baseman, and a FA after next season. Dodgers are not going to get rid of Muncy or Bellinger to put Abreu at first base. Only reason to trade for Abreu is to flip him to another team. I think the Rays but it could also be to the Marlins who would benefit from having the Cuban Abreu at first base.

      • Abreeu also would be coming from the AL and may not be able to adjust to NL pitching…it happens with some players. Muncy, IMHO can be had in a package for the right deal and Bellinger can go back to 1st base where he belongs. That’s 1 less OF right there. 1st base is not a position of need since we also have Freese to back up at 1st and 3rd if need be. I am fine with Wood and Toles being part of a deal. I believe Wood pitched his way out of rotation and no real room for Toles as it now stands. Catcher and 2nd base , plus BP are the priorities he way I see it.

    • Kiki is necessary. Hit RHs better this year while cutting down on Ks. Can play virtually everywhere except C with great D. Probably our most valuable bench player.

    • Pederson improves too and will likely platoon with Kemp again in LF and replace him for defense in late innings. Will be Kemp’s last year.

      • Kemp is an interesting question. Another option is to trade him to Tampa along with a few million dollars then platoon Pederson and Hernandez.

    • The very worst thing the Dodgers could ever do or even think about is trading Bellinger. Yes, he had an off sophomore year after that monster 2017, but he’s young, controllable, great defensively and has averaged 32 homeruns per yr in less than two years on the majors with 65 already. We finally develop our own power hitter and we trade him. I dont think so. Personally, I wouldn’t trade him for anybody not named Trout or Betts.

  5. I thought the needs were for 2nd base and catching? This could mean they don’t see Muncy for the long term since he can’t really play any other position than first. If these rumors are true than it looks as if the front office are looking to bring in more experience with offensive power and productivity in Abreu and Harper.

  6. I live 90 miles from the White Sox ball park–but I am a Dodger fan. People should not bash Abreau. He is 31 and has nearly 500 Rbi’s in five season of MLB. He is nearly a .300 hitter in those five years. I’ve never known him to be a bad first baseman and he can be used in RF. The next two or three years, he could be really, really, good!

  7. Abreu likely had an off year due to injuries. He has been very consistent over first four years never averaging under .290 with 100+ RBIs each year. I would sell high on Muncey as he will likely not repeat close to this year again. Lots of Ks, yes he walks also. While Abreu is no gold glove he is better than Muncey and Freeze can cover 3B if Turner needs a rest. Abreu is still signed for two years and as someone said we can use another RH bat especially if Puig is traded (I hope not). I would send Muncey, Wood and Rios to Sox. Gives them a 1B replacement, DH and LH starting P.

    I can also see the possibility if Abreu being flipped in a Realmuto deal as said above. But I’d like his bat in our lineup.

    • After 2019 season Abreu will have 6 years of ML service time so qualifies as a MLB free agent after the season. This is his last year of arbitration eligibility and projected to receive a contract ~$16MM. Muncy on the other hand, whose defensive stats are about the same as Abreu at 1b, will earn around $600K so Dodgers would be taking on $15.4MM with the hope that the 32 year old would have a better season then hit free agency. Muncy had more than 480 plate appearances last season and in August through October regular season he had better than 1.000 OPS. No thanks to that swap.

      • Hello SoCal! I also say no thanks to that swap but you can see my post above about Bellinger needing to go back to 1st base full time, as that would relieve the OF jam somewhat. Many here including me do not see Muncy having the same type of year in 2019. Pitchers have already adjusted to him.

      • I agree crazy to trade Muncy, one of the few Dodgers to show plate discipline and not try to hit a grand slam with no one on base. Also good at getting on base. Average defensively, but not a disaster and I think willing to improve, if his work resulting in a hitting turnaround is any indication. He can also hit lefties, although this seemed to elude management last year.

      • Impossible to predict the future, but Muncy could repeat athose numbers or could regress significantly, based on his history. My preference is really to move him in a Realmuto deal and bring Bellinger back to 1B. That would open up CF for Verdugo, possibly a platoon with Kiki. Puig should play everyday IMO, and Kemp and Pederson share LF. I like the idea of bringing Castro along with Realmuto to play 2B until Lux is ready. Helps to balance the lineup. I’d send Muncy, Wood, Taylor, Alvarez and Smith for the two of them. Of course who knows what they have in store with all the rumors involving Kluber/Bauer, Merrifield, Harper, Realmuto, Abreu, etc. a lot could happen or not much. I’m sure Dodgers will try to deal while hanging on to Verdugo, Ruiz, Lux, Ferguson, Urias, White, Santana and they should.

  8. I have read more rumors than I can process!!!! I am starting to feel sorry for Friedman!!!! As I see it, our primary goal should be to acquire a top-of-the-line starting pitcher, BP help, and a catcher who can work with Ruiz until he is ready to take over. To acquire a first baseman when we have Muncy or Bellinger seems silly.

    • BLUE LOU! I concur but I also agree with GLP’s post on Muncy being made available in the right deal. Bellinger BELONGS at 1st base, he’s a Gold Glove waiting to happen. As far as what ya say the needs are you are SPOT ON! Happy holidays from me and PD Jr.

  9. Thank you SoCalBum! Finally, some common sense, and fair assessment of Muncy. If he’s so bad, why are people artificially stating he has trade value? I say it is for ulterior motives, not based on his merits. I also wish people would quantify their negative assessments of Muncy’s offense (killer numbers, MLB-wide) as well as defense (steadily improved, not as bad as portrayed, and better than many error-proned position players). For example: many think that Muncy is to blame for a WS loss, both offensively and defensively, yet there are few things they fail to acknowledge:

    1. The entire team failed to bring their A-game to the WS, and many of those fan favs that people worship delivered far less than Muncy.

    2. Muncy does not own any of the Team’s defensive errors in all of Sept. & October. In fact, he rocked 2B on the spur of the moment in the WS, closing out 2 innings in the final game with his 2B plays, to save Kershaw, in a position he barely played all year (though, he did play 2B in AAA, and was bounced around all 3 bases in 2018). Talk about performing under pressure! He only gets better with time. Periods of offensive down streaks were short lived, and not as bad as many team members that are considered reliable.

    3. Muncy does not always swing for the fences. He also does not hang his hat on Solo HRs. He had 35 HRs in reg. season, and 79 RBIs. Do the math. And he had the highest walk rate, due to discipline at the plate. He also started off Game 1 of NLDS with a 3-Run Homer. And there were similar at-bats in October. And his OBP & OPS? Take a look at the numbers MLB-wide, and tell me he was sub-par. And his sprint speed is in the top half of all Trades being considered for Offense.

    4. His name is Max Muncy. He is not CT3, not Bellinger, nobody other that the one and only Max Muncy. So their is no legitimate reason to expect regression my Muncy. It is purely speculation. I say give him a chance to prove himself. He was given a chance, and look what happened! He saved the Dodgers 2018 Season!!!

    So, to all I ask…is Muncy so bad, you need to get rid of him, or is he so good, you need to get rid of him? Or, is he so good, you don’t want let go of him, or is he so good, you can’t admit how good, because it would impede your trade motives?

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