Dodgers’ Interest in Addison Reed Would (Only) Net Solid Get

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 05: Addison Reed
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 05: Addison Reed /

The Dodgers have been in the market for another quality reliever to add to their team, and a new name has now popped up.

The Dodgers have been linked with names such as Zach Britton, Justin Wilson, and Brad Hand because LA is looking for a dominant left-handed reliever to get lefties out and serve as the setup man to Kenley Jansen. All three fit that mold.

However, according to Buster Olney of ESPN, the Dodgers are now reportedly interested in Addison Reed, closer for the New York Mets.

That is a bit surprising considering he is a right-handed reliever and the Dodgers already have quality there in Jansen, Pedro Baez, Brandon Morrow, Brock Stewart, and Josh Fields. What they are lacking is a reliable southpaw relief arm.

Reed is in the midst of another good year. In 46 innings he has a 2.35 ERA, 1.065 WHIP, and 47 strikeouts. He’s also only walked seven batters (one was intentional).

However, he wasn’t a great option before being traded to the Mets in 2015. From 2012-2014, he had ERAs of 4.75, 3.79, and 4.25, respectively. In 2015 he had a 4.20 ERA with Arizona, but since his trade to the Mets later in the season, he’s become a different animal.

As a Met (139 innings), Reed has a 2.01 ERA, 1.035 WHIP, and 155 strikeouts. Since the start of 2016, his control has been excellent, owning a 1.4 BB/9.

Relievers are best judged when put into high-leverage situations, and when Reed is in such a situation, he allows opponents to hit a paltry .203 off of him. In comparison, Brad Hand allows a .241 average against him, and Justin Wilson .229.

This is nice, and all, but the Dodgers need someone who can get left-handers out and/or act as a reliable setup man. Over the last two seasons, he’s limited left-handed relievers to a .221 average, and this year it’s .240, which isn’t bad but not great either. More just solid.

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One thing to consider is Reed is an upcoming free agent so he would be a rental and not too expensive to acquire.

He doesn’t turn 29 until December so resigning him definitely isn’t out of the question. But, if he continues to have an excellent season, he is in line for a big payday, which then makes you take into account two things.

I doubt this front office would want to pay huge bucks for a non-closing reliever. And, every player has an ego and Reed is no different. I’m pretty sure the chance closing for another team starting next year would be more appealing than what his role with the Dodgers would be.

So in the end (sob), Addison Reed would be a nice addition to help deepen and strengthen the bullpen. However, he would not be the game-changing arm that the Dodgers are seeking. It would be like adding another Pedro Baez to the team, which isn’t bad, not even close, but would not have the effect of a healthy Zach Britton, Brad Hand, or Justin Wilson.

If that trio is too expensive to get, then Reed would be a solid fallback plan. With Sergio Romo DFA’d, there’s space for him, and there’s a chance that Reed’s addition would spell the end of Chris Hatcher in blue. That alone is worth trading for him. But again, it wouldn’t improve the team as significantly as you’d think. He’d be a solid addition, but LA needs more than incremental upgrades at this point.

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If Reed threw with the other hand, this isn’t even a debate, but he doesn’t so it’s a much tougher choice. Go all-in for a top-tier left-handed arm, or settle for renting a good right-handed one?