The Dodgers making a move for Nolan Arenado should fully turn into “priority” status.
The Los Angeles Dodgers rumors surrounding a Nolan Arenado trade are cool, but we all have to admit it seems like a long shot. The Colorado Rockies trading one of the best players in the league within the NL West to the division’s best team just doesn’t seem like it’s on the top of their to-do list.
Then again, the Dodgers are arguably one of the few teams that can blow them away with a trade offer given their stacked MLB roster and deep farm system. The hurt from trading Arenado to the World Series champs could be alleviated with a package that immediately improves the Rockies’ short-term and long-term fortunes.
Plus, any trade for Arenado would hinge on the star third baseman opting into his contract after the 2021 season, and the Dodgers are likely one of the few teams he’d do that for.
There are a few issues with getting a deal done here, but at the end of the day, the Dodgers need to make this a priority for a number of reasons. Chief among them, they need a new third baseman and can’t afford to significantly downgrade from Justin Turner, who will likely be leaving in free agency.
Don’t forget about the impending Corey Seager issue. He’ll be a free agent after this coming season and, as a client of Scott Boras, there likely won’t be any bend in the contract negotiations, especially after the slugger captured NLCS and World Series MVP honors.
We’ve already touched upon all of this at length, but perhaps the most important factor of it all comes down to 2022 and beyond. Here’s why.
The Dodgers have also been rumored to be in the market for Cubs star Kris Bryant, who will be hitting the open market in 2022 as well. Unless LA wants to go for it all again in 2021, that shouldn’t be the move. A trade for Arenado helps them solidify (for the most part) their financial outlook with another big-time player for the next five years. It would eliminate uncertainty and give them another star to work/build around.
Additionally, whether Seager comes back or not wouldn’t really matter if Arenado is acquired. Why? Because the 2022 free agent class for shortstops is stacked, and it’s quite possible the Dodgers could also be choosing from Francisco Lindor, Javier Baez, Trevor Story and Carlos Correa. You’d have to think the Dodgers would target Baez or Correa since both of them will likely be cheaper than Lindor and Seager. Either that, or they can move Gavin Lux over to short.
The Dodgers would be able to spend a bit next offseason as well considering Seager, Kenley Jansen, Joe Kelly and Chris Taylor will all likely be coming off the books. That leaves LA with only Clayton Kershaw to prioritize.
As you can see, acquiring another player like Bryant with an expiring deal isn’t the answer, because it’ll just leave the Dodgers with another likely void at third, which would create multiple important free agency/trade endeavors come next year. Solve one now, chop down the to-do list as time goes on.
Arenado may cost a lot both in a trade and financially, but he brings a potent bat, a Gold Glove, and would allow the Dodgers to know where they stand with their roster and payroll for the next five years.