In the 2017 season, Yasiel Puig absolutely should have won a Gold Glove, but was denied… probably because lots of people did not like him. He vowed to use his snub as a springboard and win the Gold Glove in 2018, but for whatever reasons, he regressed immensely, so much so that he was not even in the discussion. This is not an indictment on Yasiel (I dissed him enough when he was with the Dodgers, so I won’t continue), but rather an indictment of how Gold Gloves are awarded and how subjective defensive metrics are.This is an area of the game where you especially need to use the “eye test.” We didn’t have to look at defensive metrics to know that Puig was the TRUE Gold Glove Right Fielder in 2017 and our eyes also told us he wasn’t in the discussion in 2018.Who’s the best defensive 3B in baseball? Arenado? Machado? Chapman? How about Justin Turner? If he’s not the best, he’s in the discussion. Who is the best defensive 1B in the game? I happen to think it’s the guy who many believe is the Dodgers’ centerfielder. If he’s not the best defensive 1B in the game, he’s in the conversation.
I’m not going to include Corey Seager in that discussion, but I will say this: He’s better than many think as a defensive Shortstop and, assuming he returns to form (AC has examined the meds and guaranteed it- just kidding), he’s in the Top Third of Shortstops. The “eye test” tells me that. The “eye test” also tells me that Max Muncy can be an average 2B. It would be nice to have All Stars at every position, but sometimes, you have to have a few average players and junkyard dogs (let’s not forgetthose guys).Steve Pearce and David Freeze are “junkyard dogs” and to me, that is the ultimate compliment! I’m a junkyard dog myself, so I know of what I speak! The Dodgers need more junkyard dogs. CT3, Max Muncy and Austin Barnes could be some. Maybe Cody Bellinger and JT are junkyard dogs too and I guess and I can’t exclude Corey – junkyard dogs like to get dirty and those guys fit the bill.
A MYSTERY TEAM
With all the slowdown in the Free Agent Market, it does appear that Bryce Harper is going back to the Nats… maybe the Phils, but I don’t see it. I think the Nats are wanting him and he is happy there. The White Sox “allegedly” have made an offer to Manny Machado for a 8 year/$260 million dollar deal, but he got a taste of winning last year I can’t see him in Chicago…. even if he has “family” on that team. His brother-in-law is Yonder Alonzo (I always thought he should reverse his name to Alonzo Yonder…. but I digress), and John Jay is allegedly one of his close friends. Manny doesn’t cost a pick and while I was not enamoured with him last year, he could end up being a lot more than he showed in LA.
Maybe Manny has been “humbled” seeing that everyone doesn’t think he is the end-all-be-all. Maybe he would work out harder get stronger and be willing to play “anywhere,” and what if he believes RVS can help him get even better? What if the Dodgers are The Mystery Team that is on Manny? Now, hold on… don’t go BSC (bat shit crazy) on me. Cool it for a minute… I know it’s a lot of “IF’s” but consider this:
- The Dodgers don’t lose a draft pick (and that’s huge) if they sign Machado. Manny has the star power the Dodgers ownership craves (think Latino + Star);
- Maybe they can structure the deal so that Manny has an opt-out after 3 or 4 years and that opt-out pays him X$ which is not part of the AAV, or some other way to artificially keep the AAV lower, say around $21 million; and
- The Dodgers would have to trade Rich Hill or Kenta Maeda, but could stay under the Luxury Tax Penalty that way (Hill and Maeda are tradable).
I know he has said some dumb stuff about hustling and has tried to be too cool, but I think he can fix that. With Puig gone, his teammates won’t tolerate it. Justin Turner has one more year after 2019 before his contract is up, so here’s what the team would look like the next two years:
- 1B – Muncy/Freeze
- 2B – Machado
- SS – Seager
- 3B – Turner
- LF – Pederson/Taylor
- CF – Bellinger
- RF – Verdugo
- C – Martin/Barnes
That may not be their exact positions. Seager, Machado and Turner could move positions or not. Maybe Corey needs some rest in the beginning. I have no clue… Maybe JT would play 2B better than Machado. Initially, I did not want Manny back, but if he wants to come back and win now, this is where he should bloom. He wouldn’t have a better opportunity. I hate to lose Hill or Maeda, but that would solve a logjam in the rotation and there’s still Urias, Gonsolin, May and Grove (maybe sooner than we might expect).Rotation:
- Maeda or Hill
- Chicken Strip
- Gonsolin (I think he ready in 2019)
- The Yankees have DFA’ed Tim Locastro… Want him back?
- Caleb Ferguson and Dennis Santana may very make up a L-R power Duo in the pen next year that is outstanding. Watch for it!
- We had 23 new LA DODGER TALK Readers register yesterday. I don’t know what to say, except“Thank You and Welcome to the Best Community of Dodger Fans on the Planet”
- Godspeed to my brother in Blue: Quasimodo. No words can suffice – just know your Dodger Brothers and Sisters have you in our thoughts and prayers. May the road rise up to meet you…
- Side Note: I had to have a Brain MRI yesterday (With Contrast – Total Sedation, because I freak out in that stupid tube). They didn’t find anything (I am fine), but here’s your segue – Pile on! “Of course they didn’t find anything.” Now, that one is taken…