Los Angeles Dodgers: 3 backup plans if Justin Turner signs elsewhere

Jason Reed
ARLINGTON, TEXAS - OCTOBER 17: Justin Turner #10 of the Los Angeles Dodgers is congratulated by Will Smith #16 after hitting a solo home run against the Atlanta Braves during the first inning in Game Six of the National League Championship Series at Globe Life Field on October 17, 2020 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TEXAS - OCTOBER 17: Justin Turner #10 of the Los Angeles Dodgers is congratulated by Will Smith #16 after hitting a solo home run against the Atlanta Braves during the first inning in Game Six of the National League Championship Series at Globe Life Field on October 17, 2020 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
2 of 4
Next
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) – Los Angeles Dodgers
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) – Los Angeles Dodgers /

3. Marcell Ozuna

Marcell Ozuna has been a target of the Dodgers this offseason.

There are two truths that are seemingly working against the Dodgers bringing in Marcell Ozuna. The first is that, as of now, it appears there will not be a universal DH next season. The second is the fact that Ozuna is an outfielder, not a third baseman.

But there aren’t any attractive free agents available on the market to play third base for the Dodgers next season. Thus, the team could utilize its versatility to replace Turner at third by signing a right-handed bat at another position. That is what happens here with Ozuna.

The Dodgers have been connected to Ozuna earlier in the offseason and his market seems to be relatively cold. With the universal DH put off for at least one year, I would not be surprised to see Ozuna sign a one-year deal with a higher AAV before hitting the market again next offseason, when the universal DH will hopefully be instituted by the new CBA.

Ozuna is not a great defender, but the Dodgers would survive. The Dodgers are one of the best teams in the league in positioning their outfielders before every at bat. After all, it’s not like Joc Pederson or A.J. Pollock are great fielders, either. Alongside Cody Bellinger and Mookie Betts, he would be just fine.

So how would this look? Ozuna could be the everyday starting left fielder. There are then two paths to take at third base.

Chris Taylor would be the team’s third baseman against left-handed pitching. Against right-handed pitching, the Dodgers would start Edwin Rios at the hot corner. They then have Pollock to potentially play center with Bellinger at first and Muncy at third if Rios is hurt/cold at the plate.

They have so many options because of their versatility. Just adding that one extra right-handed outfielder removes the need for Taylor to primarily play the outfield, adding depth at third base.

facebooktwitterreddit