1. Kyle Gibson
How about exploring the trade waters for the current MLB ERA leader among starters? The Dodgers want to maintain their status of having the best rotation arms in the game, right?
Truth be told, we have no idea what the Texas Rangers are doing, but after a month, they’re actually winning. They’re 14-17, which isn’t great, but it’s worlds better than anybody expected. Are they trying to contend in a weakened AL, and especially a weakened AL West? No clue.
But new general manager Chris Young has showed the baseball world he’s not afraid to wheel and deal, as evidenced by a number of offseason trades that helped the franchise in various ways.
If Kyle Gibson keeps performing at this rate, another deal could be in Young’s future. And he could take serious advantage of a contender with asking prices always on the rise for starters.
Through his first seven starts this year, the right-hander is 3-0 with a 2.40 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 35 strikeouts in 41.1 innings. He’s averaging nearly six innings per outing. He induces soft contact. He gets batters to whiff and chase. Hitters hardly get their barrels on his pitches. He ranks in the higher percentiles in regard to all of those statistics so far in 2021.
And with a five-pitch mix (fastball, cutter, slider, curveball, changeup), he’d be almost perfect to round off this Dodgers rotation. You’ve got righty flamethrowers in Buehler and Bauer. Crafty lefties in Kershaw and Urias. Why not add a softer-throwing righty who can dance his way all around the strike zone and get hitters to miss?
It may cost a lot, but the Dodgers are going for it all in 2021 and 2022 (Gibson is signed through 2022). What’s a dent in some prospect capital going to do for a team with arguably the best farm system in the game? If you want to maintain a juggernaut rotation, May needs to be replaced with someone who can carry the load and be just as effective.
Gibson’s career numbers aren’t impressive, but his stuff was always there. It appears he’s put it together in 2021. If it lasts for another month, the Dodgers should be hitting the phones.