Financial Considerations

There are currently 38 Dodgers on the 40-man roster without consideration of either Yasmani Grandal or Hyun-jin Ryu accepting their respective QO.  With the current makeup, the Dodgers will have a salary total of nearly $179MM or approximately $27MM under the 2019 competitive balance tax threshold.  We will all know no later than Monday, November 8 at 2:00 PM PT if either accept.  Assuming they do not accept, below is the makeup of that roster and their respective and projected salaries.  There are currently 7 under contract, now that Chase Utley has been released to facilitate his retirement.  There are 13 due arbitration.  The arbitration salaries are projected by MLBTradeRumors who have been consistently very close to forecasting the arbitration values.  Finally, there are 18 players that are under club control.  The combined projected salaries for those 18 is $4.55MM as reported by Cots Contracts.  The projected $179MM also agrees with the projected 2019 salaries per Cots Contracts.

 

PlayerPosition Options Salary
Contract (7)
Clayton KershawLHSP            31.000
Matt KempOF            20.000
Kenley JansenRHRP            16.000
Rich HillLHSP            16.000
Justin Turner3B            16.000
David Freese1B/3B               4.500
Kenta MaedaRHSP 3               3.125
Arbitration (13)
Yasiel PuigOF            11.300
Alex WoodLHSP 3               9.000
Joc PedersonOF 3               4.300
Chris TaylorUtility 1               3.200
Kike’ HernandezUtility 1               3.200
Corey SeagerSS 3               2.600
Tony CingraniLHRP               2.700
Josh FieldsRHRP 1               2.800
Tom KoehlerRHRP               2.000
Pedro BaezRHRP 2               1.800
Erik GoeddelRHRP               0.900
Yimi GarciaLHRP               0.900
Zac RosscupLHRP               0.800
Club Control (18)               4.550
Austin BarnesC 1
Ross StriplingRHP 2
Scott AlexanderLHRP 2
Max Muncy2B/1B/3B 1
Cody BellingerOF/1B 3
Andrew TolesOF 2
Julio UriasLHSP 1
Pat VenditteSRP 1
JT ChargoisRHRP
Brock StewartRHSP
Dylan FloroRHRP 1
Walker BuehlerRHSP 2
Kyle FarmerC/Utility 1
Dennis SantanaRHP 2
Caleb FergusonLHP 3
Alex VerdugoOF 2
Rocky GaleC 3
Tim LocastroUtility 2
Other
Player Benefits            14.500
Matt Kemp to SD               3.500
Kenta Maeda Incentive               3.000
Chase Utley (just released)               1.000
Current Projected Salary          178.675
Amount Under Competitive Balance Tax            27.325
Competitive Balance Tax Threshold          206.000

 

 

As I see it, there are three players who could be moved in a trade to save some dollars:  Yasiel Puig ($11.3MM), Alex Wood ($9MM), and Joc Pederson ($4.3MM).  That is $24.6MM that could be moved.  I would project at least Wood and one of Puig or Joc is an almost certainty.  All three could be if Harper is in fact a possibility.  I would be shocked if he were, but at least there is a way financially to make it happen.

 

I also submit (and continue to do so), that the team does NOT need both CT3 and Kike’.  They are both utility players that could play 2B.  Or CF, or LF, or SS, or 3B. By moving one, that would save another $3.2MM.  If super utility players were the way to go, then the Dodgers should be all in on Marwin Gonzalez.  But you all know that is not how I roll.  I like a more static lineup withONEsuper utility player filling on all over the field.  It is waaaaaay too easy to like both players, and I do.  I have no preference as to which one I would choose if I were in charge.

 

We also must take into consideration that there have been reports that the Dodgers might be having some liquidity issues.  They do have pending litigation with both Security Beneficial Life and the Cuban ballplayer issue.  Also, one of the Dodger owners only cares if the Dodgers win because it will mean additional revenue. Todd Boehly only cares about his Return on Investment.  He is the primary force behind keeping the Dodger salaries below the luxury tax.  Did they get below the luxury tax threshold last year because they wanted to be in a position to spend this year?  Or did they get below the threshold because that is what they advised their potential investors?  And by the way, why are they looking for investors if there is not a liquidity crunch?  Does it all turn around in four years?  There are certainly enough questions being asked to make one think there is something amiss.

 

As shown above, the Dodgers can shed nearly $28MM from their current projected payroll, making them nearly $55MM south of the competitive balance tax threshold.  But will they spend it?  If so, where will they spend it?  Would they want to spend that on Bryce Harper?  Is that enough?  The Dodgers will not be in play for any of the other “high cost” free agents.  Andrew has already gone on record to say that Corey Seager will be ready next Spring as the Dodgers SS.  That pretty much ends any speculation that Machado will become a long-term Dodger.  I do not see the Dodgers being in play for Patrick Corbin, Dallas Keuchel, Josh Donaldson, or AJ Pollock.  They do not need another LHH OF so Michael Brantley will not be considered.  I do not see them in the market for any of the top FA relief pitchers; Craig Kimbrel, Zach Britton, Andrew Miller, or Cody Allen.  Will they be in the market for any of their next tier relievers; Brad Brach or Jeurys Familia or Joe Kelly?   They have the financial wherewithal to do so but is it in their plans to go with FA or with their homegrown talent?  Do they consider Nathan Eovaldi?  As a starter or reliever?  He seems destined to Houston or Boston as of now.  We know Friedman is a believer in his players, so I am thinking that the Dodgers will scour the waiver wires to fill in where he believes the Dodgers need help in the pen.  I still think the Dodgers can WOW Texas to get Jose Leclerc. Twins LHRP Taylor Rogers should also be a target.

 

The Dodgers can shed payroll and still be favored to win the NL West.  The DBacks and Giants are telling all that will listen that they are doing a tear down.  The Pads are at least one year away.  Making only the Rockies pretenders to their crown.  Winning the NL West really should not be much of an issue, and if that is their goal, then by doing nothing they should win the NL West for the 7thconsecutive year.  But is that enough to win the pennant much less the WS?  It is going to get exceedingly more difficult to beat the Braves, Phillies, Cubs, Brewers, and maybe Cardinals (with their pitching) and Nats (with their pitching), and potentially the Mets (with their pitching).  And they are already behind the Red Sox, Yankees, and Astros.

 

Financially the Dodgers are in a good place to pick up strategic FA players, or go all in on one, Bryce Harper.  They have the minor league talent to make trades for a catcher, 2B, or CF.  They have the ML talent to get minor leaguers to replace the talent they may move to get a catcher and/or CF.  Jean Segura is available for 2B.  Will the Dodgers trade some of their prospect capital to acquire him?  I have been an Ender Inciarte fan for at least three years.  I would love to see him in CF in Dodger blue.  Yes, I very much value defense.  Andrew and Alex worked well last winter.  Can they do it again?  There are enough FA 2B to sign one or give it to CT3 or Kike’ for one year.  I have already gone on record that I am a DJ LeMahieu fan for a 2-year deal.  I continue to be amazed at how little fans pay attention to defense.  Everyone looks at his stats away from Coors and conclude he cannot hit outside of Colorado, and his defense has no value.  I think with his bat to ball skills he can and will hit outside of Coors, and his glove will save enough runs to win 2-4 games.  One other possibility is another tremendous bat to ball and defensive player…Jose Iglesias.  His K rate for his career is less than 12%.  Of course, he does not hit for HR power, so does he even make the cutting room floor with the Dodgers FO?  He does have his share of doubles.

 

Many of us believe that the Dodgers have missed out on a solid #2 or co-Ace SP.  They missed on Chris Sale, Justin Verlander, and Gerrit Cole in the last 2 ½ years.  The Dodgers were very much in on Sale at the trade deadline in 2016.  Would he have been enough to get the Dodgers past Chicago to the WS in 2016?  Yes, Sale would have cost Julio Urias, but maybe they have 2-3 WS titles with him.  Verlander would have been expensive, and they would not have gotten under the luxury tax last year with him.  But Gerrit Cole could have been and should have been (IMO) a Dodger this year for minimal prospect capital.  This year the Dodgers have a chance again to get that co-co-Ace…Corey Kluber.  They may have to take Jason Kipnis with him, but really is that so bad to get Kluber?  You get Kluber for 3 years at $47.5MM (including $1MM trade bonus), and Kipnis 1 year at $14.5MM plus a $2.5MM buyout in 2020.  But another positive is that Kluber’s AAV is only $7.7MM for 2019, and Kipnis is $8.75MM for 2019.  Kipnis is not my idea of a good 2B, but he is only needed one year.  How would a rotation of Buehler/Kluber/Kershaw/Hill/Urias look?  Both Wood and Maeda could be moved in the Kluber deal.  Maeda gives the Indians a longer term less costly RH arm, and Wood gives the Indians a LHSP.  They have no LHSP and only Brad Hand and Tyler Olsen as LHRP.  Include Scott Alexander and maybe the prospect capital gets less and less.  They need RHH OF, so maybe Puig could be of interest.

 

Posturing just a bit.  Trade Puig, Wood, Joc, Maeda, CT3 or Kike.  That is $34MM in saving.  Couple that with the current shortfall of the luxury tax of $27MM, and that is $61MM below the luxury tax threshold.  They could trade for Kluber and Kipnis ($29.5MM in real $$$, and $16.45MM AAV).  That would leave them more than enough to sign Bryce Harper and still stay under the luxury tax. What would it take to get Jose Abreu and move Belli to CF? He has one year of arbitration estimated to be $16MM.  Bottom line, the Dodgers have choices, and financial concerns should not be a consideration. If they are, then they should strongly consider selling the team.  Or they can stand pat andHOPEthat the players play at an elite level and stay well below the luxury tax threshold.  That will make Todd Boehly happy.  I am not sure about the near 4MM in attendance.

 

This article has 54 Comments

  1. Bravo. I am firmly on the DJ LeMay train now. I’m also warming to James Paxton in blue. The nice thing about setting your sights on Harper is failing that we now can spread that money around. I also want a one-year high-dollar reliever.

    1. Yep. Great content. My money’s on Wood being moved. After that I’m not sure. I’m a Taylor fan so I don’t like that. Joc is also undervalued. I’ll say Kemp is the other way to dump salary.

      1. Dionysis

        Joc is making as much money as the all the other players on this team, under team control, and that list includes both Corey and Cody.

        I don’t call that being under valued, considering Joc has only produced decently 2 of the last 4 years.

        And I wouldn’t bet on him to have two good years in a roll, after the last four years.

        1. Sorry MJ, my replay to you ended up below. You are probably right about Joc being expendable, especially with Verdugo & Toles in tow.

  2. Great read!
    All decisions above my pay grade. I think these guys look at your thinking! They should it’s the F word….FREE!

    Thanks for the insight!

  3. AC

    Thanks, another good job!

    It is to bad the Dodgers can’t get someone to buy out that other owner Boehly.

    But I would think since Boehly is the only owner that is more concerned about going over the luxury tax, then winning a World Championship, I don’t see the Dodgers going to the extreme that Boehly would like to see, although I don’t know what percentage of the Dodger’s ownership, Boehly holds.

    1. MJ, by the way, I do not like Todd Boehly, and it is solely my opinion as to what he represents. I have no inside knowledge of how the organization is financed or run. I just have researched enough of him to believe he may not be as virtuous as fans may want their owners to be (putting it kindly), and that his primary concern (by a wide margin) is his ROI. He is a corporate executive that does not belong as an owner of a sports organization whose primary focus should be on winning and not ROI. Magic is the quintessential successful entrepreneur, but I do not think he cares one bit about his ROI with the Dodgers. His foremost concern is WINNING. He brought Mark Walter to the table, but unfortunately that also included Boehly. Again, just my opinion. Mark probably knows more about the current regime than I do.

      1. AC

        Your educated guess, is good enough for me.

        I think your probably right about this guy.

        You would never see a team like the Yankees trying to do something like this, with their fans.

  4. I think the moves the team makes will speak volumes of their intentions and the fans are watching closely. The team has never signed a FA with a QO attached and I think Harper is out for that and other reasons. I like Kluber a lot as a front line starter option and the team has the pieces to make it work.

    Every team will ask for Muncy: some on here say to ‘sell high’ but I say find him a position, you don’t trade that power and OPS without a VERY tasty return. Are Kike and CT3 redundant? Perhaps. Is it time to move Joc? If it opens up a spot for Verdugo then I’m down. Time to move Puig? I say a loud NO but again every team will ask for him so the return must be tasty IMO. Wood or Maeda? If Ryu takes the QO then one will be moved and they both have upside. I keep Stripling around for his versatility in many roles. Kemp would be hard to move so he splits time in LF and RF for another year.

    To me the untouchables are Buehler, Seager, Cody and JT. Guys to build around are Puig, Muncy and Urias. Everyone else is tradeable for the right return. Prospects that should be held onto: Ruiz, Lux, Peters. Everyone else is available in the right deal.

    I don’t see a real effort to make wholesale changes despite all the speculation. For one the team turns down lots of deals trying for ‘an edge’. For two staying under the threshold means moving salary to add much of anything especially if Ryu takes the QO. For 3 they are winning the West with what they have right now and they know deadline deals are there to tweak the roster ahead of the playoffs.

    Real needs: Catcher but maybe only short term. 2B but there are many internal options. Legit # 2 or 3 starter but maybe they like what they have, especially with Hill on final year of contract. True setup man for the 8th but they cost more than the team likes to spend. Clear out OF logjam. Clear out some of the AAAA types for quality.

    I’m hopeful but not optimistic the teams approach aligns with what the fans want.

  5. Fair. I just like joc as a good 4th OF who probably the potential for a 40 hr season in his prime. That is valuable even at $4 mil.

    1. As a 4th OF, Joc is not going to be a 40 HR guy. He can hit 20+ in a reserve/platoon role, and maybe that is enough for many to want to retain him. Toles does not possess the power that Joc has, but he does have better bat to ball skills. Those skills play better in a reserve role with not as many ABs. Defensively, Joc goes back on a ball better than any Dodger OF, but does not possess the speed to cover the gaps which is why he is more suited for LF. Both CT3 and Belli are getting better at going back, but it is that 1st step that stifles them a bit. They will get better if that is where they will end up, but both have the speed and range to handle the gaps. You can always start your CF deeper, but you cannot make up for the lack of speed and range in the gaps. I think Toles has more speed and range than Joc but would not be considered for the CF role, so I do not know how much of a consideration that would be. Regardless, I think I would choose Toles as my #4 if I were in charge. Joc also has more trade value because of that power.

    2. Dionysis

      To be fair, we all have certain players that we happen to like, that we probably value more then we should.

      It didn’t help Joc’s case with me, when I saw all 18 of those players still under team control, making all together next year, what Joc is projected to make, by himself.

  6. The infighting behind the scenes with Guggenheim Partner, Shareholders and Boehly is epic and could potentially force a sale of the Dodgers. It’s bad… is all I can say.

    For people to say that Friedman just wants cheap players is borderline delusional. Here are the facts:

    1. Signing Big Name Free Agents to stupid, long-term deals is the path to losing… not winning. I’m not saying that you should never do that, but how would like to owe Stanton $300 million over the next 10 years? Those last 5 years are going to be horrid… maybe sooner.
    2. During Friedman’s tenure with the Dodgers, he has been saddled with some really bad big contracts. Now, it’s just Kemp, and while he was good the first half of last year, he’s not a really good player. Some people clamour for him to play more,but the Dodgers had 16 players with a higher WAR than Matt.Kike Hernandez and CT3 each doubled Kemp’s WAR. Insane!
    3. Some have used the example of Justin Verlander and the fact that Friedman did not trade for him, but instead traded for Darvish because Verlander was owed for two more years as an example that Friedman would not spend the money. YES! He could not spend the money as he had to get below the Luxury Tax and he could not do it with trading for Verlander. PERIOD! End of Story. Quit saying dumb stuff! Oh… and most baseball people felt Darvish was the better choice at the time. However, even if he wasn’t, Friedman could not have traded for Verlander. PERIOD!

    I am glad AC did todays blog. I started to do it but didn’t have the time. I know how much time it takes and we all owe AC a Thank You! He probably did it better than me anyway!

    I agree with him on most of it. I also believe that the Dodgers could trade Puig, Wood, Muncy, Pederson and Maeda, and get Kluber and Harper and Abreu… especially if RYU doesn’t take the QO. $350/10 years with opt outs might get it done. That would mean no upgrade at C or 2B, but that fine. I would love this lineup:

    1. Verdugo RF
    2. Seager SS
    3. Turner 3B
    4. Harper LF
    5. Abreu 1B
    6. Bellinger CF
    7. CT3 or Kike (keep one) 2B (until Lux)
    8. Barnes/Smith C

    Rotation:
    1. Kershaw
    2. Kluber
    3. Buehler
    4. Hill
    5. Chicken Strip

    1. I believe this last season was the first time since Friedman came aboard that the Dodgers did not lead MLB in payroll. The team has never been afraid to spend money.

      The deal Houston struck for Verlander was an 11th hour discount when Detroit ate $10 M and Verlander dropped his last option year. If that was on the table maybe they take Verlander instead of Darvish but can’t sign both.

      Love Kluber, not feeling it for Abreu or Harper.

  7. I don’t have favorite Dodger players,I have no problem trading any player at any time as long as the trade makes the team stronger so let’s see how Friedman puts together the 2019 team.

  8. M.T. – AC is your #2 starter… Don’t be getting no hammy homes!!
    I got Kiki over CT3…
    Gotta come up with something better to start the season than Smith as B/U C..
    Urias will be #5 starter by May or June…
    I’d love your lineup #1 thru #7, but then reality sets in!!!
    Am I the only one out here that is scared with J.T.???
    Notre Dame over FSU tonite… Patiently waiting on my trip to the Memorial Coliseum…

  9. AC has done a great financial analysis of where the Dodgers sit now and has done an interesting job of playing “what if?”. I don’t believe that the Dodgers are inclined to make the changes pre-season that are being speculated about.

    I still say that the past is the best indicator of the future. What has the Braintrust done in the past 3 off-seasons?

    2015/6
    Resigned Chase Utley, Howie Kendrick and AJ Ellis
    Traded minor leaguers for minor leaguers and obtained Frankie Montas, Trayce Thompson and Micah Johnson
    Traded for Rob Segedin
    Signed free agents – Scott Kazmir (3/$48MM)
    Brandon Beachey (1/$1.5MM)
    Kenta Maeda (8/$24MM)
    Yasiel Sierra(6/$30MM)

    2016/17
    Traded Howie Kendirck for Darren Ruf
    Re-signed Rich Hill, Kenley Jansen & Justin Turner
    Traded for Logan Forsythe
    Signed free agents
    Sergio Romo (1/$3MM)

    2017/18
    Claimed Grant Dayton and JT Chargois off of waivers
    Traded for Scott Alexander
    Salary dump – Adrian Gonzalez, Charlie Culberson & Brandon McCarthy for Matt Kemp
    Decline Andre Ethier’s option
    Sign free agents
    Tom Kohler (1/$2MM)

    Pick up any trends? The Dodgers mainly stand pat from season to season, adding a reliever or 2, nibbling around the edges, adding talent from the farm.

    I expect them to do likewise this season. From the standpoint of the owners, this is a team that has won 6 straight Divisional titles and has been to the Series 2 years in a row, so why make major changges?

    1. That’s actually a very realistic scenario. Assuming they will be all in on Harper is wishful thinking, even without Boras. A trade makes more sense because like in basketball just make the salaries line up-that’s why I like a 5 for 1 for Kluber. Signing DJ for 2B when they have cheap internal options is not their MO. Signing any FA with a QO is not their style. Paying big bucks for a lock down setup is not either. Expect some tinkering and one or two analytic moves without much splash and a wide open ST. Then again if the market moves slowly and some late bargains are there they have some cash left to spend on a prove it deal.

    2. Does the fact that they signed J.T., Kenley and Kershaw for a boat load of money count for much of anything?

      1. They have re-signed their own free agents for big money on occasion, but have never signed a free agent from another team for big money.

    3. What’s really depressing is romo turned his season around and maybe we have a ring if we kept him.

  10. Fearless Prediction:

    Scott Alexander becomes a “lock-down” reliever for the Dodgers in 2019.

    1. Thank you, thank you. That was Mark Timmons everybody… he’ll be here all week.

      Don’t forget to tip your bartender… Drive safely, good night!

  11. Fahan Zaidi, as quoted by NBC Sports, on why everyone should play multiple positions:
    “”I do think it has a cultural impact on a roster when players move around and they don’t identify as ‘I’m the shortstop and I’m the third baseman.’ You’re just a baseball player and you’re part of the team and you do whatever the team asks or needs of you, and that creates a different kind of culture that I think is really conducive to a winning environment,” he said. ”

    This is OK to a point – but really – don’t have a regular CF because everyone should just be part of a team?

    1. Rick

      Are you sure he is only all about numbers?

      That sounds like some heavy BS.

      But I don’t know if it is really BS, if he got some to buy into that, like I think.

  12. Somebody please explain to me how Andrew Toles has good bat to ball skills. In 2018 he had 258 AAA at bats where he struck out 56 times. And he only drew 13 BB.

    https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/t/tolesan01.shtml

    I commend AC on the work he did to produce the above, and other stuff he’s posted. Takes a lot of time, thought and dedication. In general, I get the impression that the possibilities are endless, and that there are multiple paths to success.

    If I had to choose between Kike’ and CT3, it would be CT3, but a close call nevertheless. I base that on the fact that I think the CT3’s speed plays better in a utility role than Kike’s power. Other than that they both possess a great deal of versatility with neither having much, if any, advantage over the other.

    I have stated before, and still have the same opinion that the Dodgers should pursue DJ LeMahieu. Like AC I think he will hit outside of Coors (as I’ve stated before), and like AC I value his defense. How many times have we seen just a single defensive mishap balloon into a big inning. Just making the simple, routine defensive plays day in and day out can make a huge difference over a full season. And sometimes winning or losing a postseason game or series can center around a single defensive play or misplay.

    I won’t get into the Dodgers’ finances, since quite frankly, I haven’t delved deeply enough into it to have any opinion one way or the other. However, I’ve read enough to understand that there might be things to worry about, maybe a lot.

    1. Brooklyn

      Toles struck out 25 times in a 105 at bats his first year in the majors.

      And he struck out 17 times in 96 at bats in his second year, before he hurt his knee.

      You are taking his numbers after he missed most of the year before, and after he he missed almost a month, at the beginning of this last season.

      And it isn’t easy having to catch up with everyone else, after your a month behind.

      And remember Toles was coming back from a pretty serious knee injury, too.

      AC was comparing Toles bat to ball skills, to Joc.

      Take a look at what Joc did in his first two years in the majors, when it comes to striking out.

      Strike outs are not the only way you measure bat to ball skills.

      Toles hit much better then Verdugo in high leverage situations this year, and the numbers are not even close.

      And Toles hit righties better then Verdugo too, after being a month behind.

      And he has had good numbers in high leverage situations, every time he has played at the major league level, and in AAA this year, like I already mentioned.

      And I would think getting hits in high leverage situations, would also be a pretty good measure, of a player’s bat to ball skills.

      1. And in 2017 when Toles struck out 17 times in 96 at bats, he already had 5 HRs which was a tie for the team lead with Puig, at that time.

        And he was second in RBIs on the team, before he got hurt.

  13. Mark, I’m not sure about “lock-down”, but I could see Scott Alexander being a valuable bullpen arm if he gets a grip on his command.

    1. Here’s the thing: He’s not throwing 3 feet over the catcher or bouncing the ball 12 feet in front of the plate. He’s just needs a “fine tuning.”

  14. I’ve ignored this pace for a month as I usually do around October. A few posters wear me out and I wear on others as well. I will most likely disappear again very soon.
    .
    I have lost interest in Taylor and Muncy much like many have lost interest in Pederson. I continue to have high hopes for Bellinger but I worry about him.
    .
    For one year of Goldschmidt I would offer Kemp, Stripling, and Muncy and take on Greinke’s contract. AZ could court Goldschmidt again when he becomes a free agent in 2020 and have the money to compete by saving the cost of Greinke’s $35M annual contract. They could also chase after Machado or Harper or any of the free agent pitchers without Greinke’s contract.
    .
    I would offer Wood for Sonny Gray. A change of scenery could help both, save the Dodgers $3M, and add a righty to their rotation if Gray can earn a spot.
    .
    I would offer Taylor, Puig, Ruiz, and Barnes for Realmuto and then see what pitchers might be needed to make the deal. Some have said it would take at least May and Verdugo to get Realmuto.
    .
    RF Verdugo
    3B Turner
    SS Seager
    1B Goldschmidt
    LF Pederson
    C Realmuto
    CF Bellinger
    2B Hernandez / Lux

      1. Dionysis

        I know you had your heart set on Harper.

        I looked at his War this last year, and his War was not very impressive.

        But I don’t necessarily think War is always a good measure, myself.

        But I think this front office probably uses that, as a measure.

        So I don’t see this front office going after Harper, unless it is an unbelievable deal.

        But I do agree with your line of thinking, after losing these last two World Series.

    1. That is interesting. I have thought about Goldschmidt as well. That might be a way to dump Kemp. They would likely DFA him and we could get him back.

      It might take another prospect or two to get Goldy. Not enough for Realmuto.

      On Sonny Gray, Brian Cashman doesn’t think he can pitch on “the Big Stage.”

      https://nypost.com/2018/11/05/brian-cashman-has-given-up-on-sonny-gray/

      He might not be good in LA either. It’s rumored he may go back to Oakland.

      1. Goldy would be another really good athlete.

        But I wouldn’t want a player that would block Cody out from first, to long.

        And I have no idea what Goldy will take, but it will probably be a lot more, then Aberu, I would think.

  15. Interesting.
    `
    I’ve always thought, read and heard is that Walter controlled the Guggenheim investment in the Dodgers and had the voting power. I didn’t know Boehly even had an interest in day to day operations, to him it is and was a medium term asset investment.
    `
    Hmmm.

    1. Walter does control it, but he answers to shareholders and many, including Boehly as not happy. Officially…
      Todd Boehly is an owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the chairman, CEO and controlling shareholder of Eldridge Industries, a private holding company that manages its capital across a diverse portfolio of businesses across several industries.

      Prior to launching Eldridge, Boehly was the President of Guggenheim Partners where he launched Guggenheim’s credit investing business and later assumed responsibilities for the asset management business. Boehly received his B.B.A. from the College of William & Mary and studied at the London School of Economics.

      Boehly is a member of Executive Committee of Guggenheim Capital and serves as a trustee or board member of several other organizations.


      Here’s another good read on it:

      https://www.beyondtheboxscore.com/2018/7/4/17532686/dodgers-mark-walter-guggenheim-partners-sec-investigation-insurance-lawsuit

      1. Wow!

        “Where does this leave the baseball world? It leaves them, at the most charitable, with an owner with possibly shaky financials and an SEC investigation, as well allegations they were using falsely-boosted assets to acquire the cash for the sale. I don’t think we’ve seen a fraudulent sale in baseball before, but if that was actually the case, it would make the McCourt ordeal look like kids fighting in the sand”

  16. Interesting article in The Athletic on Jim Bowden’s 5 “realistic trades” for two years of JT Realmuto. The most likely trade partners:
    .
    Astros – RHP Josh James and OF Tony Kemp
    .
    Braves – 2 of RHP Ian Anderson, RHP Touki Toussaint, RHP Bryse Wilson, and LHP Luiz Gohara
    .
    Dodgers – Verdugo and Dustin May
    .
    Rockies – 2B Garrett Hampson and RHP Peter Lambert
    .
    Nationals – OF Victor Robles

    1. If I’m the Dodgers I do that deal. Victor Robles and Jaun Soto are 2 reasons the Nats won’t go crazy to keep Harper. Have to think the Marlins would want one of our young catchers as well.

      AC what do you think it would take to get Kluber? If they would take Kemp and full salary we could take back Kipnis too. That makes CT3 or Kike expendable, maybe Maeda or Wood and some prospects? Rios is blocked, so are all the IF’s and utility types. There are lots of pitching prospects too.

      Adding Realmuto and Kluber would be huge. A playoff rotation of Kluber, Buehler, Kershaw and Urias or Hill would look good. The Ryu situation will affect this dynamic as well. Or it could be 2 extra draft picks. I think the deadline for QO decision is Thur the 16th. Grandal could accept who knows? $17.9 is above his market value.

      1. I honestly have no idea what it would take to get Kluber. I am not sure what they are thinking. They are in a bad division so winning the AL Central may not be an issue.
        But are they looking to stay with the Red Sox, Yankees, and Astros for 2019? If so, they may want more ML players than prospects. The one thing they want to do is include a bad contract; either Encarnacion or Kipnis.
        .
        They have no LHP other than two relief pitchers; Brad Hand and Tyler Olson. I am thinking that Alex Wood would be included. They are losing both Andrew Miller and Cody Allen, so maybe maybe a multi inning pitcher (Ross Stripling or Dennis Santana). They are not going to take Kemp because they want out of bad contracts. They also need another OF to replace Michael Brantley, Lonnie Chisenhall, Brandon Guyer, Rajai Davis, and Melky Cabrera. The primary 4 they have remaining are 3 LHH (Tyler Naquin, Leonys Martin, and Bradley Zimmer) and 1 SH (Greg Allen). So preferably they will want a RHH, so maybe they would be interested in Puig. Or maybe CT3. By taking Kipnis, the prospect requirement may not be as high. But if it is Wood and Puig there are about $7.5MM difference in real $$$, so maybe it will not require as many top prospects. Wood and CT3 about $15.5MM difference so maybe less prospects.
        .
        I have not followed the Indians farm system that well, so I do not know what they are looking for. They have 2 Top 100 prospects (pitcher and 3B).
        .
        At the risk of looking sillier than I normally do, how about Corey Kluber and Jason Kipnis for Alex Wood, CT3, Dennis Santana, and Jeren Kendall.
        .
        The players have until Monday at 2:00 PM PT to accept their QO. I have included below some of the key off season dates.
        .
        • The day after the World Series ends: Free agency begins at 6 a.m. PT
        .
        • Five days after the World Series ends (Nov. 2): Free agents can sign with new teams beginning at 2 p.m. PT; also the deadline for teams to submit qualifying offers
        .
        • 15 days after the World Series (Nov. 12): Deadline for free agents to accept or reject qualifying offers is 2 p.m. PT
        .
        • November 20, 2018: Deadline to set rosters in preparation for the Rule 5 Draft.
        .
        • December 9-13, 2018: Winter Meetings, in Las Vegas (Rule 5 Draft is Thursday, Dec. 13)
        .
        • January 11, 2019: Deadline for players and teams to exchange numbers for salary arbitration.
        .
        • February 1-20, 2019: Arbitration hearings (scheduled as needed)

        1. By the way, the Indians only have 34 on the 40 man, so taking 4 for 2 will not present a problem for the Indians.

          1. MJ, I haven’t looked at this site since my earlier post. The stats I posted worked out to Toles striking out about 22% of the time The 25 K’s in 105 AB’s that you posted works out to about 24% and the 17 K’s in 96 AB’s works out to about 18%.

            I don’t have any stats for RISP, but I do know from observation that Verdugo (who I believe is about 4 years younger than Toles) is the superior hitter, and because of his age even offers more power potential. Verdugo hit 11 HR’s this year (LA + OKC), and with maturity probably has the potential to hit about 18-25. I don’t have Toles’ power numbers, but I don’t believe they’re very high. And I’m not including extra base hits in general.

            The only area in which Tokes has an advantage is speed, and I believe that Verdugo more than makes up for that with his very accurate cannon arm.

            Toles, for me is at best a reserve outfielder on a team like the Dodgers, whereas the younger Verdugo has a chance to grow into a starting outfielder on a championship caliber team.

  17. AC, I would do that deal for Kluber and Kipnis. Would they? They would if you threw in May or White. I’d try Alvarez first.

    Now that Zaidi is gone, I wonder if Friedman will wait and see what Roberts does before signing him to a new deal… that, and his old buddy, Joe Maddon will be Free at last! 😉

    1. I too am very curious as to why the extension for Roberts has not been concluded. Friedman does like Maddon and Epstein does not seem to be as enamored.
      .
      I thought about a top 10 pitcher as well. But with the $$$ differential in the trade I was not sure if one would be needed. Maybe with no Kipnis you throw in White or May.

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