We’re sure this isn’t breaking news to anybody, but nobody saw the Los Angeles Dodgers trading for Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner at the July 30 deadline. Though now it makes all the sense in the world, at the time, the Dodgers certainly didn’t need another shortstop and had to fill important gaps elsewhere.
We’re also sure you probably knew the Nationals weren’t even really thinking about trading Turner. Why would they? Turner and Juan Soto as a duo in the nation’s capital for the next decade? Seems like a World Series-winning core.
But perhaps it was the Dodgers that convinced Washington to pull the trigger. We did recently learn some new information about this year’s trade deadline and how the biggest transaction of them all went down.
It was always obvious LA would be inquiring about Max Scherzer given the troubles they were having with their starting rotation … but a few days before the deal finally came to fruition, the Dodgers poked their head in and asked about Turner, too.
"“Privately, the Dodgers were interested in trading for Turner, too. According to Andrew Friedman, the team’s president of baseball operations, the Dodgers were told on the Monday of trade deadline week that Scherzer was available but that Turner was not,” Scott Miller of the New York Times wrote.“’Then on Wednesday we sensed a little bit of an opening and, by Thursday, we had lined up and acquired him,’” Friedman said."
It’s kind of bizarre how it altered so quickly, though. The Nationals knew signing Turner to a long-term deal would be a challenge ever since the Mets inked Francisco Lindor to his $341 million contract. They also previously had discussions with Turner that never progressed. And the Monday of that week, Turner wasn’t available … but two days later he was?
But hey, we’re not complaining! The Dodgers restocked in the most colossal way imaginable in order to defend their World Series championship and have managed to patch up what would be irreplaceable losses for so many other clubs … all the while putting countless burning offseason questions in the background.
Turner’s been among the primary catalysts for the Dodgers’ two wins in the NLDS against the Giants. He’s also inserted himself nicely into the rivalry with some inflammatory comments a few weeks back.
Now, it all comes down to Game 5 on Thursday night. Even though Turner will be in LA in 2022, he has an opportunistic moment to solidify himself as a Dodgers legend should this postseason run fall in their favor. And it’ll all be thanks to the Nationals shifting gears at the last possible moment.