The Los Angeles Dodgers shook the MLB world on Thursday. The SF Giants biggest rival acquired a pair of stars from the Washington Nationals in a trade that will bring right-handed pitcher Max Scherzer and shortstop Trea Turner to LA. While the Dodgers parted with a package of four prospects (Josiah Gray, Keibert Ruiz, Gerardo Carrillo, and Donovan Casey), it was far from an overwhelming package.
The Dodgers added two stars on Thursday. How will the SF Giants respond?
A different Giants rival, the San Diego Padres, were reportedly close to acquiring Scherzer earlier in the day, but the Dodgers ultimately swooped in and nabbed the Nationals ace alongside another superstar in Turner. While Scherzer is slated to be a free agent at the end of this season, the Dodgers will have an additional year of team control over Turner through arbitration. Capable of playing shortstop and center field, the 28-year-old adds another superstar bat to a star-studded lineup in Los Angeles. Turner is hitting .322/.369/.521 this season with 18 home runs and 21 stolen bases.
It seemed plausible that the Giants could build a trade for Scherzer. Instead, the 37-year-old ace will join the rotation of San Francisco’s biggest rival. Scherzer has posted a 2.76 ERA on the season, issued just 28 walks, and recorded 147 strikeouts. In his final start with the Nationals, he allowed just one run in six innings against the Phillies.
Now that Scherzer is off the table, Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi and general manager Scott Harris will have a series of difficult decisions to make before the MLB trade deadline at 4:00 pm EST (1:00 pm PST) on Friday, July 30th. With the best record in the league, the Giants have no reason to concede the National League West crown. However, with the Dodgers adding two big names, there may be greater pressure to acquire an All-Star caliber player of their own.
There are some star players reportedly on the market that could fit in San Francisco, but perhaps Zaidi and Harris believe they can win a championship without making a big move. Either way, the pressure is on the SF Giants. While they may be atop the NL West standings, the Los Angeles Dodgers have made the biggest move of the summer and put a lot of pressure on their rival’s front office.