Los Angeles Dodgers State Of The Union For 2016

The Dodgers need to start spending money like right now, otherwise they stand to jeopardize themselves winning a 4th straight NL West title in 2016. Both the Giants and D'Backs have signed ace pitchers this year, and added another good Starting Pitcher besides the point. The club does have several young pieces and Depth at Roster to pull off a blockbuster trade forth coming - or they still have enough resources to acquire players for their 2016 run. The clock is officially ticking gentelmen

The Dodgers need to start spending money like right now, otherwise they stand to jeopardize themselves winning a 4th straight NL West title in 2016. Both the Giants and D’Backs have signed ace pitchers this year, and added another good Starting Pitcher besides the point. The club does have several young pieces and Depth at Roster to pull off a blockbuster trade forth coming – or they still have enough resources to acquire players for their 2016 run. The clock is officially ticking gentlemen.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer) 

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The Dodgers are having the same kind of offseason the Baltimore Orioles had in 2014 – going into 2015.

If everyone remembers that year, they rejected a couple year contract with Grant Balfour, when he failed a physical, and they did the same thing with Grady Sizemore.

That club also traded back to back 50 Saves guy Jim Johnson.  By the way, the 2014 O’s won the AL East with a 97 – 65 record.

Key cogs in the wheel were new Closer Zach Britton, and Super Utility man Steve Pearce.  A lot of parallels can be made between that squad and the Dodgers.

Late last week, the Dodgers pulled out of a three year deal wish Hisashi Iwakuma because they had concerns with a physical.

For the whole winter they have watched the Giants sign Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija, while the Diamondbacks stole Zack Greinke way from them, while trading a kings ransom for Shelby Miller.

With the Dodgers losing out with the Zack Greinke signing, and a back out of the Hisashi Iwakuma deal, their should be plenty of dough. Andrew Freidman and Farhan Zaidi should run down any decent player whose contract ends at the end of this year. The Dodgers will be penalized 50% for abusing the Luxury Tax Threshold again in 2016 for 4th season, but they start having guys come off the books soon.

With the Dodgers losing out with the Zack Greinke signing, and a back out of the Hisashi Iwakuma deal, their should be plenty of dough. Andrew Freidman and Farhan Zaidi should run down any decent player whose contract ends at the end of this year. The Dodgers will be penalized 50% for abusing the Luxury Tax Threshold again in 2016 for 4th season, but they start having guys come off the books soon.  Go for the title next year, and then slowly start retracting payroll after that. As of right now, the Dodgers will have a payroll of around  $207 MIL with the current Roster.

This franchise has stood idly by while the two other top clubs in the Division have made great strides to improve.  The path they are on is not wise.

I wrote an article yesterday that featured all of the players who may have their contract expire at the end of 2016.  All of these players should be investigated on. 

This club is too close to a championship to pull off the financial reigns yet.  LA should take advantage of a flawed Salary Tax penalty system for one more before it may evaporate in the new CBA to be bargained on after next campaign.

Throw in the team resigned Chase Utley, while Howie Kendrick departs, and this team is seriously in jeopardy of falling back.

It is not just their Division that has improved.  The Cubs have brought in Jason Heyward, John Lackey, while the Mets and Nats have continued to acquire guys on their Rosters to help make the playoffs.

This looks bad to a team that has the richest TV contract in the game, plus the highest attendance capability in the Majors.

Everyone knew that the new regime of Andrew Friedman and Farhan Zaidi were going to take a different approach than what Ned Colletti had done, but this is borderline ridiculous.

There is still time to rescue this mission.  The Dodgers need to throw their hat in the ring with several players remaining on the board.

Yoenis Cespedes should top that board.  He wouldn’t have been my original choice to upgrade the roster. But he could be an awesome addition for that squad.

It may be time to trade Yasiel Puig. Whether it is now or midway through next year, the franchise could withstand dealing him away if it nets and ace pitcher.

It may be time to trade Yasiel Puig. Whether it is now or midway through next year, the franchise could withstand dealing him away if it nets and ace pitcher.  Puig, 24, saw a regression in his output for the 2nd straight season after a brilliant rookie campaign.  The RF hit for a 3 Slash of .255/.322/.436 with just 11 HRs and 38 RBI in about a half a year’s worth of AB.  Perhaps a trade to Miami, Oakland or the Chicago White Sox could be worked out for Jose Fernandez, Sonny Gray or Chris Sale.

Place him with Joc Pederson in CF – and Yasiel Puig in RF, and holy cow that would be an incredible Oufield if all hit to their potential.

You also have Corey Seager for a full year, and with Adrian Gonzalez and Yasmani Grandal in the lineup as everyday position players, only Second Base and Third are kind of in question.

Justin Turner might also be a nice solution at Third Base. But maybe if they went out and signed David Freese, it would make better sense for Turner to be a Super Utility player.

Also, how come Andre Ethier can’t be dangled as a trade piece?  The longtime Dodgers player is only guaranteed $37.5 MIL more over the next 2 years, which seems not a bad for a guy who has a .823 OPS for his career – including a mark of .852 last season.

No matter if the club doesn’t sign an OF or not, they really need to explore at least 1 – 2 Starting Pitchers and plenty of Bullpen help.

Guys like Scott Kazmir, Doug Fister, Yovani Gallardo, Ian Kennedy, Alfredo Simon and  Wei-Yin Chen should all be on their radar – with the idea to sign 2 of them.

Beyond Clayton Kershaw, the rest of the rotation is now scary.  Hyun-Jin Ryu is coming back from a season ending injury, Brett Anderson has had problems in the past with injuries, and Brandon McCarthy wont be available until mid 2016 coming back from Tommy John Surgery.

Alex Wood is a steady #4 or #5 guy, but really he could be pressed into a bigger role by default.

Yes the club has young Julio Urias, to potentially come in and eat some innings with, but sometimes prospects don’t pitch as well when you need them to.

The Dodgers are supposed to contend for a World Series after all.

Added to the problems mounting is that Kenley Jansen and J.P. Howell are on the last years of their contract.    Perhaps they still may offer Jansen a Qualifying Offer as a reliever next winter now.

This organization should still try to sign 1 – 2 relievers.  Bobby Parnell and Tommy Hunter are two flamethrowing righties the club could look to, or maybe they will opt for a guy like a Craig Stammen or Jeremy Affeldt.  Whatever the case, they would be wise to add some arms.

As it stands right now, the Relief Core isn’t bad with Luis Avilan and Pedro Baez joining Jansen and Howell already.

Chris Hatcher, Carlos Frias, Ian Thomas and Joe Wieland are also on the Depth Chart presently. Again, not horrific by any means, but when you are contending for a World Series, you need really good late inning arms.

If Los Angeles is able to sign another Infielder, it would mean they have a strong bench again.  Carl Crawford, Justin Turner – or Chase Utley, Alex Guerrero, Enrique Hernandez, A.J. Ellis and Scott Van Slyke are all hardly slouches.

The management could also see fit to do some dealing.  They have been rumored to be eyeballing Jake Odorizzi out of Tampa Bay.  There could be some young Infielders headed back Tampa’s way for his services.

Guerrero also is out of options and could be another guy on the trade block.  One also might wonder what the club could get for a trade involving Yasiel Puig.

I may hold off on trading low on Puig.  Maybe Dave Roberts can get the best out of him yet.

There is always that threat of a Jose Fernandez trade involving Puig and Urias as part of a package that nets him.  This may see the light of day before the year is out.  Although it may take 2 or 3 more prospects involved to finalize a deal like that.

Don’t also count out the A’s for jumping into a deal like that midway through the year for Sonny Gray either.  Puig’s contract is not that bad of a deal for a team like Oakland – while Sonny Gray may cost $50 MIL over 3 seasons of Arbitration if he keeps pitching well.

If Pederson can emerge like he did in the 1st half of last year, than the club could function without Puig.  Ethier could play RF – and Crawford and Van Slyke could platoon in LF.

Point is.  The Dodgers are about an 86 – 88 win team right now as constructed. I would handicap them parallel to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the NL West, and a few victories shy of the San Francisco Giants.

Lets just see if they can’t pull a 2014 Baltimore Orioles maneuver by proving everyone wrong via a Division win.

Dodger Stadium has the capacity to outdraw every other ballpark in the Majors, with hovering at over 56,000 per game if full. It will be the last ballpark to make its debut in the 2016 season on Tuesday, Apr.12, 2016

Dodger Stadium has the capacity to outdraw every other ballpark in the Majors, with hovering at over 56,000 per game if full. It will be the last ballpark to make its debut in the 2016 season on Tuesday, Apr.12, 2016.  What kind of moves will the organization make between now and then?  Whatever happens, things will not be boring at Chavez Ravine next year.

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***

A Big thanks goes out to our chief writer Hunter Stokes for preparing today’s feature post.

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Posted on December 24, 2015, in MLB Teams State Of The Unions and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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