July 12, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Brett Anderson (35) reacts after giving up a solo home run to Milwaukee Brewers right fielder Ryan Braun (8) in the first inning at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
2. Adding a pitcher
We know Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke are going to keep the Dodgers in pretty much every game they pitch in. Brett Anderson has been great for a third starter, even though he entered the season expecting to be the fifth. Mike Bolsinger has been steady, but hasn’t shown much of an ability to survive late in games. Brandon Beachy figures to be a nice back-end starter, and looked decent in his first outing in two years, but was hurt by a rough defensive day from Andre Ethier and some iffy ball/strike calls.
Anderson is 4 1/3 innings shy of the second most innings he has thrown in his career, and he’s been surprisingly healthy through the first half of the season. If he stays healthy, he would not be a bad #3 starter in the postseason. However, that is a big if, and it would be more reassuring with another top-line starter in the mix.
With a number of pitchers scheduled to hit free agency this offseason, some of them could be on the move before the trade deadline for a package of prospects. Johnny Cueto has been the big name for most of the season, but with their recent slide and dimming playoff odds, there’s an increasing chance that the Detroit Tigers move David Price. Jeff Samardzija and Mat Latos should also be available, but neither of them are that much of an upgrade over a healthy Anderson.
If the Dodgers were able to bring in a Cueto or a Price, it would make a five or seven-game series extremely difficult to lose. The possibility of Kershaw, Greinke and Cueto/Price throwing six of seven games in a series gives the Dodgers a huge advantage.