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Dodgers’ Yu Darvish, Brandon Morrow, And Others Now Free Agents

Oct 31, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts (30) relieves relief pitcher Brandon Morrow (17) in the sixth inning against the Houston Astros in game six of the 2017 World Series at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers’ off-season officially began on Thursday, and the front office has plenty of decisions to make during the free agency period.

2017 was filled with surprising developments and an incredible run, but expectations weren’t reached. The Boys in Blue came close to winning a long-awaited championship, but were unable to do so. This means that adjustments will need to be made, and it starts with roster composition.

Below is a list of Dodgers players that are upcoming free agents:

  • Yu Darvish
  • Brandon Morrow
  • Chase Utley
  • Curtis Granderson
  • Tony Watson
  • Franklin Gutierrez

Yu Darvish

It wasn’t the ending that Yu Darvish had envisioned. He only lasted a total of 3.1 innings in both appearances during the World Series, after posting an impressive 2-0 mark against the Arizona Diamondbacks and Chicago Cubs. It was looking like the right move was made at the trade deadline during the NLDS and NLCS, but the World Series changed perceptions.

During the regular season with the Dodgers, Yu Darvish posted a 3.44 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP in nine starts. It’s amazing that Darvish became the fastest player to reach 1,000 strikeouts, but his inconsistency on the mound casts a shadow over the bright spots. He’s still shown the ability to throw some of the best stuff with his hefty array of pitches, but it won’t mean anything if he can’t control the command and trust mechanics. It also won’t mean anything if he continues to tip pitches.

Brandon Morrow

If Kenley Jansen is the best closer in the game, then Brandon Morrow has established himself as one of the top relievers in baseball. A lot of fans will remember what happened during Game 5 of the World Series, but his arm was non-existent after such heavy usage, and he probably shouldn’t have made an appearance. Morrow appeared in 14 games, pitched 13.2 innings, tallied 12 strikeouts, and held opponents to a .216 average during the postseason.

This guy once struck out 17 batters in a game as a starter, and now he’s refined his game as a reliever. The Dodgers will need to act quickly if they want to re-sign the California native, because he’ll be one of the hottest names on the market.

Chase Utley

The Silver Fox didn’t register any hits during the postseason, but he was reliable at times during the regular season. He’s a pivotal figure in the Dodgers clubhouse. Utley’s a veteran that guides young players, and delivered when Dave Roberts needed him to help the offense. It might be imperative to keep him because of the influence he has on guys like Corey Seager and other players in the clubhouse.

Curtis Granderson

The Dodgers were in a dilemma playing a struggling Joc Pederson, which opened the door for the Granderson deal. He displayed strong hitting as a New York Met in 2017, but that didn’t translate over to Los Angeles.

Dave Roberts believed that Granderson would eventually find his stride after the trade, but it never transpired. Granderson eventually posted a .067 average in the postseason, didn’t make the World Series roster, and watched the left field tandem of Pederson/Kike Hernandez thrive during October. It’ll be hard to see him in Dodger Blue next season, especially with a young and crowded outfield that produces.

Tony Watson

Watson came over to Los Angeles after the trade deadline and performed well during the postseason. He posted some good numbers by only allowing a .200 opponent average and a WHIP of .86 in 11 games during October.

The front office is always looking to make adjustments, but it might be best to keep Watson in the Dodger bullpen. It’s still a solid group that could end up being the No. 1 bullpen in 2018, and Watson would definitely be more comfortable after everything that happened this season.

Franklin Gutierrez

The Dodgers signed Gutierrez last February, with hopes that the 34-year old veteran would contribute by hitting against left-handed pitching. His season was derailed due to injury, and the Dodgers eventually went on to make a drastic improvement against lefties without him.

It’s highly unlikely that he’ll be back in a Dodger uniform next year. He’s in the same situation as Granderson – there’s just too much talent in the outfield.

Which players do you think should remain in Los Angeles? Let us know in the comments below!

[button color=”red” size=”big” alignment=”center” rel=”follow” openin=”newwindow” url=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/dodgers-yu-darvish-tipping-pitches-game-7-world-series/2017/11/03/”]Dodgers’ Yu Darvish Was Tipping Pitches In Game 7 Of World Series[/button]

Written by Staff Writer

22 Comments

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    • Brandon Morrow and Chase Utley hopefully and I agree if Honeycutt stays Darvish, with Honeycutt’s guidance Darvish could thrive I believe. Watson possibly.

    • you must somehow sign tomorrow . I think he’ll take a two-year fifteen – eighteen million dollar contract . he has no kids at thirty five but he is the best set up man is a small . seems like the giants me pay him ten million a year for a closing . you are right at immediately but you have to keep them . the rest of them you can dump . Tony C is the only left-handed that looks decent and I said Honeycutt will make an excellent middle reliever

  1. Bring back Marrow and Watson. What are your thoughts on bringing in Lance Lynn or Jake Arrieta?

  2. Morrow & Watson for sure.
    Love Utley & would think he has roll as a utility man.
    While you must have a vetran presence as a stabilizing influence, I wouldn’t keep anyone who was keeping young & ready talent off the roster. Love the young bucks.

  3. Morrow and Watson! Like to keep Chase but I think he’s at the end and should look at keeping Culberson up…. But for sure lock up Morrow!!! Watson would be nice to keep too!

  4. Trade Grandal for Dee Gordon, and pickup Forsythe’s option. That will give us infield depth. Hire Utley as a bench coach. Sign both Morrow and Watson and see if we can pick up some good minor league prospects for McCarthy and/or Kazmir. No need to sign Yu Darvish. We can get to the post season without him, and he certainly didn’t warrant his build up as a PS ace.
    Starting Rotation: Kershaw, Hill, Wood, Maeda and Ryu. If anyone goes down we can go to some of the up and coming young studs. What Dodgers have been missing since the coming of Kershaw is a homegrown ace. Time for Urias and/or Buehler to emerge. Finally see if you can resign Ethier at a discount after you buy out his option. There still a lot of baseball left in him if he can stay healthy, and he can also serve as the needed veteran presence after Utley departs.

    • Yeah I generally agree. Morrow and Watson definitely. We finally have a solid pen, and even if we sign another starter, we know Maeda is flexible and reliable in that capacity. If Utley doesn’t mind another 1 year deal (and he probably doesn’t) then let’s re-sign him. I know he wants another ring before he retires, he doesn’t want to move far from home, and might get offers from the Angels and Padres, but since #ThisTeam will largely remain the same next year, if Utley wants another ring, staying put will be his best shot at it. And I totally see the organization keep him as a coach in the not-too-distant future. Also looking forward to a full year of Toles and Ryu.

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