Baseball’s holiday lull is quickly coming to a close as the world will usher in the New Year in just a few short days. Big name free agents are expected to make their decisions public in early January and Spring Training will follow just a month later. For the Dodgers, news should heat up once again as the stove turns from a medium-low flame back to high.
Most recently, despite the break in signing and trades, news broke that Yasmani Grandal declined a four-year deal worth $60 million from the Mets. Over the last three years, Grandal has been the NL’s most powerful catcher, hitting 89 total home runs since joining the Dodgers in the offseason prior to the 2015 campaign. Grandal has consistently been a threat at the plate while other catchers have struggled in that department warranting a payday well north of average salary of a 2019 backstop. However, either to the delight or disappointment of Dodger fans, Grandals decision to decline an offer of that magnitude should almost certainly rule out a return to Los Angeles for the 30-year old catcher. The Dodgers are looking for a short-term option behind the plate with prospects, Keibert Ruiz and Will Smith rising quickly towards big-league action. The Dodgers will either have to look to the trade market or sign Martin Maldanado with Grandal looking for astronomical financial results this offseason.
It has been well reported that the Dodgers have checked in on Tigers outfielder,
. Castellanos, 26, was a first-round pick back in 2010 and since debuting in 2013, he has proven his worth at the plate.
, however, Castellanos struggles
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mightily, amassing a -19 DRS as a right fielder in 2018 and a career DRS of -26. The Dodgers have been connected to Castellanos but recent reports indicate the Tigers asked for either Keibert Ruiz or Alex Verdugo in a potential return. Castellanos does not bring much to the table for the Dodgers if you look at the big picture- he is defensively challenged and his bat ranges from just above average to very good. But with a return so high, a trade would only make sense in the event that the Dodgers could flip the 26-year old to Cleveland in exchange for Corey Kluber.
- Speaking of Corey Kluber, trade talks seem to have gone quiet. Sure, the holidays cause some serious slowing in the baseball world but it has felt like radio silence on the front for an extended period of time. The Indians could be waiting to see what the Dodgers can do with Castellanos from Detroit or the trade could have simply lost momentum. The San Diego Padres have also jumped in on the deal and that could be significant for a number of reasons. One, the Padres have the farm to make a deal happen. Their minor league system is one of the best in baseball and at the very least, the Friars can use it to leverage the Dodgers into giving up more in a deal for the perennial Cy Young candidate from Cleveland. Second, the Padres could have a genuine interest in Kluber and a trade could easily propel the Padres far past where they would have been in their climb back to contention.
- Dodgers Way would like to wish all of our readers a very happy New Year. We appreciate everyone’s attention to the site and look forward to more news in 2019!