Predicting How Trades Will Reshape NL West
Buyer: Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers are the only NL West team besides the Giants that will be buying this trade season. But if Clayton Kershaw’s back injury doesn’t heal soon—he was shut down “indefinitely” today due to persistent discomfort in his back—then the Dodgers don’t have much postseason hope. But assuming Kerhsaw will still make most of his expected starts the rest of the season, the Dodgers will be furiously trying to chase down the Giants.
They are reportedly shopping Yasiel Puig. He hasn’t been great since exploding onto the scene in 2013, so it won’t change much in the division if he ends being moved. The Dodgers offense could improve some, but Puig is so good defensively that it probably wouldn’t be much of a net gain for Los Angeles. The bigger impact would come from the Dodgers’ potential return in a Puig trade, which would most likely be a starting pitcher.
It’s not that the Dodgers don’t have the warm bodies to fill five rotation spots. But after Kershaw and Kenta Maeda, the rest of the rotation is iffy, either due to talent, health or experience.
Speculation is swirling around whether the Dodgers might go after Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria. That doesn’t make much sense, though, considering that current Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner is one of their better players. To go a step further, the Dodgers’ infield appears to be solid all around, even though Adrian Gonzalez is having a down year.
Where they could use help is in the outfield. What if they bring in CarGo? Or Jay Bruce? They’re one of the only teams that could stomach taking on Ryan Braun’s contracts.
If the Dodgers can add a starting pitcher and a big bat in the outfield, that could make them a lot more formidable as they try to chase down the Giants in the season’s final two months.