Dodgers acquire David Freese for minor leaguer Jesus Valdez
The acquisition of David Freese at the waiver trade deadline in 2018 almost led to a World Series championship, which is why it is ranked among Andrew Friedman’s best trades.
Known as a clutch performer from his time in St. Louis, Freese joined the Dodgers in September of 2018 as a platoon player against left-handed pitching. He ended up becoming a dominant bat off the bench. He finished the 2018 season on a tear, going 15-39 at the plate with two home runs.
He carried his hot streak into the postseason that year. In the National League Division Series against Atlanta, his pinch hit single in the sixth inning of the series-clinching Game 4 win put the Dodgers ahead 3-2 after trailing by a run when he came to the dish.
He would later have an amazing 2018 World Series in which he batted .417/.500/.833 over 14 plate appearances. It just wasn’t enough to help the Dodgers get past the Red Sox.
Last season, in the first round loss to the Washington Nationals, he made history, becoming just the fourth player in postseason history to record three hits off the bench in a single game, which he did in Game 3.
Trading Jesus Valdez, a career minor leaguer, was a small price to pay for a golden bat off the bench for the Dodgers.