The hot stove will heat up not too long after the final out of the World Series. For the Dodgers, their biggest free agent will be Andrew Friedman.
Gerrit Cole or Anthony Rendon? Who will be the biggest free agent that the Dodgers pursue? It is a question that will begin as soon as free agency opens. Regardless of who the Dodgers sign this winter, their biggest free agent to retain will be Andrew Friedman.
Back in October of 2014, Andrew Friedman was brought in as the Dodgers’ President of Baseball Operations on a massive five-year deal worth $35 million dollars. In his five seasons with the club, he has taken the Dodgers to two World Series appearances. He has also helped lay the foundation for many years to come.
Stan Kasten has said multiple times this season that he was certain Friedman would be with the Dodgers beyond this season. The one wild card that could ruin those plans is the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox fired Dave Dombrowski and are looking to shed payroll in an attempt to stay competitive while staying under the luxury tax. Something Friedman has mastered.
At the trade deadline, Friedman has made moves big and small for players such as Rich Hill, Yu Darvish, Manny Machado, and his underrated acquisition of Adam Kolarek this year. While Darvish didn’t work out in the World Series, the moves for Rich Hill and Manny Machado are part of the reason that the Dodgers were in the World Series in 2018 as both were key players.
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In free agency, Andrew is yet to make a big signing with his biggest moves so far being the signings of Joe Kelly and A.J. Pollock in last year’s free agency. Those moves didn’t work out well this season but both players figure to be key role players for the 2020 season and beyond. If Friedman is extended then it will be interesting if he makes his first star free agent signing for Anthony Rendon or Gerrit Cole.
The draft and player development have been where Andrew Friedman has been at his best during his time with the Dodgers. Walker Buehler is one of his best draft picks so far and then there is the 2016 draft where Will Smith, Dustin May, Tony Gonsolin, Gavin Lux, and D.J. Peters were all selected. Matt Beaty was also part of the 2015 draft where Buehler was drafted.
While Andrew Friedman has not been able to bring that elusive World Series title back to Los Angeles, he has helped lay the foundation for the team to compete for one for many seasons to come. For the next 3-4 seasons at least, the Dodgers will be a juggernaut in the National League.
Friedman needs to be kept for whatever price he asks for, he has been that good in Los Angeles. This is the best position the Dodgers have been in during their title drought and most of it is due to the work of Andrew Friedman who is the Dodgers’ biggest free agent.