Justin Turner has been one of the biggest fan favorites on the Los Angeles Dodgers as well as one of the most clutch players on the team throughout his tenure. The Dodgers may not have won the World Series this year without him, as his double play in Game 7 of the NLCS literally may have saved the season.
That has not expedited the free-agent process for Turner and the Dodgers, however. At the time of this writing, Turner is still a free agent and has several other teams expressing interest. MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reported that the Dodgers, Toronto Blue Jays, Milwaukee Brewers and one more mystery team make up Turner’s “final four.”
The interest from the Blue Jays may have subsided, though, with the team signing Marcus Semien to help bolster the infield.
Semien was one of the reported targets that the Dodgers were considering to potentially replace Turner, as was DJ LeMahieu, but now they’re both off the board.
This makes it even more important that the Dodgers sign Turner to fill that third base/right-handed bat void. However, if Turner gets a better offer elsewhere you cannot blame him from leaving LA.
So what if Turner does leave? What should the Dodgers’ backup plan be? There are three realistic routes that I can see the Dodgers taking, however, there are some big names that I would rule out.
The big names to rule out for the Los Angeles Dodgers:
I know that Dodger fans have this dream of Nolan Arenado coming to Los Angeles but I simply do not think it’s going to happen. Arenado’s contract is massive and it would require the team to likely trade top talent in the form of prospects in order to convince the Rockies to trade him within the division.
Andrew Friedman isn’t going to take that kind of risk when he’s got other tricks up his sleeve.
Ramirez would be great on the Dodgers, but I highly doubt that the Indians trade him at this point. Yes, they traded Francisco Lindor, but that’s because he was due for a massive payday after this season and the Indians were not going to extend him, so they opted to get some value before he walked and in the process offloaded his $20 million salary for 2021.
Ramirez is already under contract on a really team-friendly deal with club options for 2022 and 2023. The cost here would be even more for Ramirez, and Cleveland wanted Dustin May and Gavin Lux for Lindor, according to reports, in the most recent talks.
Anyway, let’s get into the actual backup plans.