I don’t sense any sarcasm from Buster when he says this regarding the Dodgers’ plans:
Heard this: The Dodgers think they will be able to add both a starting
pitcher and a relief pitcher before the July 31 deadline, making trades
similar to those they’ve made in recent years when they surrendered a
high-caliber prospect while asking their trade partner to pay the salary
of the player involved.
That approach landed the Dodgers Manny Ramirez who — while certainly bringing some excitement for half a season — has also caused them some headaches and cost them a ton of money. That approach also cost them Carlos Santana in the Casey Blake trade. The same Santana who even before his outrageously good start in Cleveland this year — and even before the trade — was considered one of the best prospects in all of baseball.
Dodgers’ defenders will constantly say that the McCourt/Colletti regime has brought with it lots of success in terms of playoff appearances. But it has also gutted what was once one of the best farm systems in baseball, and this kind of deal — trading youth for veterans and not replacing the talent with smart investments in terms of quality free agents or top amateur talent — has dangerously leveraged the Dodgers and has imperiled their future.
Of course, Frank McCourt knows all about over-leveraging, so this is nothing new.
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.