1. Alex Verdugo, Outfield
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Verdugo is already knocking on the door to make an impact with the Dodgers on the big league level. He’s having a career year in Triple-A hitting .344/.411/.462 with more walks (30) than strikeouts (28).
Already regarded as the best Dodgers position prospect in the farm system, Verdugo is ready. Just like Bellinger’s time in the minors, Verdugo has nothing left to prove in the minor leagues. He owns a career .310/.363/.443 slash rate in the minors and has proven to be efficient at every outfield spot.
The issue is not if Verdugo can play, it’s when he makes the Dodgers roster. The way things are going this season, it would be difficult for the Dodgers to call him up and find him every day playing time with all the depth the club has, which is why I can see the Dodgers open to trading him.
All of these players listed are highly regarded around the league and Friedman could package together more than enough to get anyone available. It’s not a matter of IF the Dodgers can make a trade, it’s IF the Dodgers WANT to make a trade.
I can very well see the club calling up Verdugo come September and getting him big league experience. But at the same time, if the club goes out and makes a splash like some Dodger fans are clamoring for, don’t be surprised if Verdugo is the centerpiece of the deal.
On that note, I ask you – would you be willing to include any of these prospects in a trade? We know Friedman and Zaidi haven’t been willing to make these trades. And that philosophy has led to Dodgers success this season because if they had made a trade for the Cole Hamels back in 2015 or Chris Sale back in 2016, the Dodgers wouldn’t have Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger, or Julio Urias on their roster.
Julio Urias brings me to my final thought to throw out there. The organization protected Urias’ arm from the day he was signed up until the day he went through surgery. Yet, Urias has just pitched an out over 100 innings and is now sidelined for 12-14 months. I’m not saying by any means is Urias’ career over, he’s not even 21 for crying out loud. I’m just pointing out how prospects, at the end of the day, can be a crapshoot no matter how much you protect them. So maybe sometimes it is better to go after it for one season. If not for the glory of that year, but because the future of these young players is so uncertain.
Honorable mentions: Trevor Oaks, Brock Stewart, Mitchell White, DJ Peters, Rob Segedin