The Los Angeles Dodgers are eternally bound to be one of the more active teams ahead of every trade deadline.
Fans demanded change amid the club’s recent dip in form, though they picked up a game on the Giants following Wednesday’s convincing 8-0 shutout, and it appears president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman answered the call.
As expected, the Dodgers were linked with a plethora of high-profile names over the last couple weeks.
While all of the suggested names would serve as a shot in the arm for Los Angeles, it’s worth noting that Friedman doesn’t have a spotless track record when it comes to making deadline deals.
In fact, if we’re talking about the biggest Dodgers’ mistake in recent deadline history, you only have to go back three years to 2018…when they acquired infielder Brian Dozier from the Twins in exchange for Logan Forsythe and prospects Luke Raley and Devin Smeltzer.
The Dodgers surely regret trading for Brian Dozer back in 2018.
In hindsight, it’s easy to see why Friedman sanctioned this trade. The club was in need of some infield depth, and Dozier was seen as someone who could provide value with the bat and in the field. Unfortunately for the Dodgers, however, Dozier proved to be an absolute dud.
In 47 games for LA, the former All-Star slashed just.182/.300/.350 with five home runs, 20 RBI, and .650 OPS. To make matters worse, Dozier posted a 0.0 WAR and went just 2-for-16 with two RBI in October. While the Dodgers went on to win the NL pennant, it was no thanks to Dozier.
Let’s just say Los Angeles was lucky to have such a deep bench, as Dozier was easily replaced by Enrique Hernandez, Max Muncy and Chris Taylor — all of whom were capable of playing second base (Dozier’s primary position), as well as other positions at an elite level.
In the Dodgers’ defense, nobody could see Dozier’s drop off coming. While he struggled in Minnesota before coming over, we’re talking about a player who hit .252 and averaged 29 home runs and 81.2 RBI per year in five seasons before the trade.
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What makes this trade hurt even more? That the Dodgers gave up Smeltzer, who’s quietly dominated the minor-league ranks over the years. The young righty was called up in 2019 and enjoyed quite the debut season, posting a 3.86 ERA and 38 strikeouts in 11 outings.
Taking all of this into account, the Dozier deal was a runaway winner for the biggest Dodgers blunder in recent trade deadline history.