Dodgers Way Announcement: FanSided Winter Meetings Introduced

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HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 28: Major League Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred Jr. speaks to the media during a press conference prior to game four of the 2017 World Series between the Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Minute Maid Park on October 28, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 28: Major League Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred Jr. speaks to the media during a press conference prior to game four of the 2017 World Series between the Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Minute Maid Park on October 28, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) /
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MLB Winter Meetings are set to kick off on December 10th through December 15th. The Dodgers figure to be one of the most active clubs in these meetings and will certainly be rumored to several players. Because the MLB offseason is without a doubt the most entertaining offseason of all sports, the FanSided MLB community decided to create their own MLB Winter Meetings.

The Dodgers are one of 30 teams that are looking to make improvements to their roster. A roster that was one win away from their first World Series title in 29 years. Andrew Friedman and Farhan Zaidi will be hard at work this offseason in search of finding that missing piece to push the Dodgers over their championship drought.

Well, as the experts of Dodgers Way, Michael Wittman and myself will assume the roles of Friedman and Zaidi in the first FanSided MLB Winter Meetings since 2014.

Beginning on Monday morning, Wittman and I will take simulated control over the Dodger organization and act as the Dodgers front office. We will be negotiating with other FanSided peers representing the other 29 teams in this representation of the Winter Meetings. We did something similar to this during the trade deadline when we made a hypothetical trade for J.D. Martinez at the end of July. In retrospect, I think that deal could have been the difference of a championship. But heck, it was just a simulation.

The trade deadline simulation was fun, but this is WAY bigger. I’m talking about experts assuming the roles of Rob Manfred (Colby Patnode), Scott Boras (Alan Carpenter), and several others acting as team GMs. We have a great supporting class here looking to better their team.

Here are the general ground rules that all of our GM’s will have to adhere to: 

  1. Honor the 40-man roster in its current form.
  2. Hold within 15% of last season’s opening day payroll, as reported by COTS.
  3. Some teams will be under more or fewer restrictions on their budget based on public statements made this off-season.
  4. Trades will mainly target major league talent and the prospects associated with ML deals.
  5. Our Commissioner will do a final sanity check on trades before approving them, but both sides need to come together first with terms.

*Commissioners note* Options have already exercised, Qualifying offers have been made (and rejected), Rule 5 decisions have been made, and coaching staffs are in place. So we have more-or-less reached a good point to do this.

For the sake of not plagiarising our colleague, Alan Carpenter’s work, I encourage you to check out his article to answer any FAQ you may have. Our goal from this post is to inform our followers of the event we are participating in and also let you know what our goals are for these next few days.

Mission:

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Obviously, when taking control of a roster that the Dodgers have, it’s hard to find moves that will make the club better. This team was a few bad breaks away from being crowned World Champions and now have to wait a prolonged six months before getting their shot at redemption.

Well, Wittman and I understand that, and we also understand the current front office intentions. Starting with the concept of cutting payroll and holding onto minor league talent.

The Dodgers have an excess of money coming off the books, but that doesn’t mean they want to splurge on free agency this offseason. So, you have our word that we will keep that in mind with any deals we offer.

Yet there still is a few glaring needs to improve this club. A solid right-handed top of the rotation pitcher, a left-handed reliever, a back-end of the bullpen piece, and potentially a right-handed outfielder.

Goals/Targets:

To give you an idea of how we’re approaching these meetings here are our targets/priorities. I’ll rate the likeliness of each goal from a scale of 1-5, 5 being the best.

  1. Perfect a sales pitch to sign Shohei Ohtani. (5)
  2. Framework a potential deal to sign/replace Brandon Morrow and Tony Watson. (4)
  3. Engage in trade discussions revolving Giancarlo Stanton. (2)
  4. Field offers on trades for Joc Pederson, Andrew Toles, and Yasmani Grandal. (3)
  5. Initiate discussion on re-signing Yu Darvish to a Dodger controlled contract. (1)
  6. Look to sign a viable starting pitcher to a minor league deal with a spring training invitations (Doug Fister or Chris Tillman) for depth. (2)
  7. Add left-handed second base to bolster depth behind Forsythe. (3)

We’re working with all other 29 members of the MLB to do what’s best to improve this current Dodger roster. That being said, we’ve deemed a few prospects untouchable (Walker Buehler and Jeren Kendall). That leaves Alex Verdugo, Keibert Ruiz, Yadier Alvarez, and Mitchell White available in the right deal. The initial reaction may not like Verdugo being available after a limited sample size, but it would need to be the right deal to move him, and he’s available because of the outfield depth.

We’re locked and loaded for this year’s Winter Meetings. There’s no need to make a big splash this offseason, but there is indeed the possibility for some moves.

Next: Chase Utley Grade

We encourage feedback from Dodger fans. Who would you like to target? Who should we consider trading? Should we go all-in for Stanton? Should we sign Ohtani? Let us know on social media! We’ll keep you posted on any move we make in this active simulation of the Winter Meetings.

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