Neither do they, apparently.
A couple of weeks after locking up Andre Ethier, the Los Angeles Dodgers gave Cuban defector Yasiel Puig a seven-year, $42 million contract in June. Now, as a result of the weekend’s megadeal with the Red Sox, it’s hard to see where he’s ever going to fit in.
1B Adrian Gonzalez – Signed through 2018
LF Carl Crawford – Signed through 2017
CF Matt Kemp – Signed through 2019
RF Andre Ethier – Signed through 2017
The Dodgers’ outfield is completely set for five years beyond this one, and moving Ethier to first base during the back half of his deal is also off the table. Of course, the Dodgers are plenty rich, and they could well pay someone to take Crawford or Ethier come 2014 or ’15. Puig, though, looks like a very expensive excess piece. And with the huge contract, he’s not going to have any trade value at all until he proves he can play in the majors.
Puig, for what it’s worth, has impressed in limited action this season. The 21-year-old went 12-for-30 with four homers in nine games in his stint in the Rookie Arizona League. Since moving up to high-A ball earlier this month, he’s hit .375/.468/.425 with no homers and six steals in 40 at-bats.
Free agent right-hander Ervin Santana picked up a minor league deal with the White Sox, according to various reports Friday. Per Bruce Levine of 670thescore.com, Santana will make $4.33 million if he manages to crack the major-league roster this spring. Any official confirmation from the team is still dependent on the results of a physical.
The veteran righty hasn’t seen any action in MLB for some time. He was laid low by prolonged discomfort in his right middle finger last spring, and underwent a capsular release/debridement procedure that kept him off the mound for all but 24 2/3 innings of his 2018 campaign with the Twins. When healthy, however, he’s been as durable and productive as they come. Santana earned his second career All-Star distinction in 2017 and pitched to a 16-8 record in 33 starts with three shutouts, a 3.28 ERA, 2.6 BB/9, 7.1 SO/9, and 2.9 fWAR through 211 1/3 innings.
Barring further complications with his pitching hand, the 36-year-old should be a stabilizing force for the White Sox’ rotation in 2019 — assuming he can beat out southpaw Manny Bañuelos and right-handers Jordan Stephens and Dylan Covey for a back-end role, that is. According to FanGraphs, the club’s starters ranked worst in the league in 2018 with a collective 5.07 ERA, 5.18 FIP, and 3.1 fWAR.