So I'm back from vacation. And the flu. Finally.
With a week left until the trade deadline, I'm sure you're all aware of the recent rumors surrounding the Dodgers and guys like Ryan Dempster, Matt Garza, Shane Victorino, Jimmy Rollins, Justin Morneau, James Shields, and others. For now, here's my take...
I really don't understand Ned's obsession with starting pitching the past two weeks. Sure, you can never have enough pitching, and the Dodgers rotation would certainly be better if Ryan Dempster were inserted into the #2 slot. Thankfully, Ned has balked at the Cubs' current asking price for Dempster. He's a stud, indeed, but only a rental and should be valued with that in mind. If Ned is able to work that out, wonderful. But including Zach Lee in such a deal makes little sense.
So why turn the attention to Matt "Don't Call Me Billingsley" Garza? He's an arm. Albeit an arm who is at least under team control beyond this season. But why? Is Matt Garza really such an upgrade over what the Dodgers already have? I think not. To me, he's just another guy and probably not worth the resources when there are so many other places to make real improvements on this team.
Which leads me to this: What is Ned actually going to do? Well, nobody knows, of course, but if I had to guess, I would think Ned has something significant up his sleeve. Not necessarily Manny Ramirez big, but something along those lines in the sense to expect the unexpected. I can picture..
- Acquiring James Shields and B.J. Upton from the Rays.
- Trading with the Brewers for Aramis Ramirez and Zach Greinke.
- Grabbing Justin Morneau and Francisco Liriano from the Twins.
- Taking Hanley Ramirez and Josh Johnson off of the Marlins hands.
- A deal with Seattle that lands Justin Smoak and Jason Vargas (not my favorite idea)
No, I'm not playing fantasy baseball here. And these aren't predictions, mind you, just ideas on how I think Ned is approaching the deadline. Sometimes it's easier to send and receive multiple players in a package, like I'm suggesting above. Teams tend to spread out their risk when dealing with a package of players, rather than the one-for-one or the two-for-one strategy. And there's no question that Ned will have to part with some significant pieces if he wishes to upgrade significantly. In the case of the sellers listed, they're giving up at least one soon-to-be free agent and one high priced player.
All options should be on the table. We all know that there are only three untouchable players on this team. Every player in the organization beyond the three of them should be ready to pack their bags, just in case.
But that's just my two cents...