The Los Angeles Dodgers are expected to make a huge splash at the trade deadline, as they are armed with money, prospects and the need for starting pitching.
A pair of left-handers sits atop the team’s wish list in David Price and Cole Hamels; however, Hamels has a handful of suitors and the Detroit Tigers are unsure if Price will be moved. The Philadelphia Phillies have made a deadline of their own for their left-hander, while the Tigers are another loss away from possibly deciding to become “sellers”. If the Dodgers can’t get one of the left-handers, they reportedly had a backup plan of Texas Rangers’ right-hander Yovani Gallardo. It appears another name has been added to that backup plan.
According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, the Dodgers may be interested in a right-hander from the NL Central:
I keep hearing Leake and Gallardo mentioned as fallback options for #Dodgers if they don't land Hamels or Price.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) July 28, 2015
Leake is 8-5 with a 3.78 ERA and 87 strikeouts in 20 starts (128.2 IP) this season. He is 27 years old and will be a free agent this winter, just like Gallardo. Leake has made at least 30 starts the past three seasons and is on pace to do it again in 2015. The Cincinnati Reds have already traded one of their starting pitchers when they sent Johnny Cueto to the Kansas City Royals.
As for Gallardo, he is 7-9 with a 3.19 ERA and 83 strikeouts in 21 starts (121.1 IP). He’s in his first year with the Rangers, who are considering the co-favorites with the Dodgers for Hamels. Gallardo has made at least 30 starts the past six seasons and is used to pitching in the NL after spending his first eight seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers.
The picture will become clearer in the coming days, as the deadline is Friday.