SI predicts Dodgers will sign completely unexpected free agent
By Adam Weinrib
While Dodgers fans are on the west coast debating Freddie Freeman vs. Max Muncy, Sports Illustrated is in the corner of the bar toking a peyote pipe, painting with all the colors of the wind.
In their updated, mid-lockout free agent preview, SI selected the top 25 players on the board and sent them to new destinations/maintained their prediction from earlier in the offseason.
According to this panel of supposed experts, the Dodgers might be getting an infusion of talent and power from a position-less wunderkind.
We’re not exactly sure how Kyle Schwarber fits on Los Angeles’ roster. Perhaps Andrew Friedman saw his awkward 40-game cameo in Boston at first base and decided he’d snag the position in Max Muncy’s wake? Maybe the team is so assured a universal DH is coming that they’re ready to make the ultimate commitment? I guess AJ Pollock gets hurt fairly often, that could work?
That’s tomorrow’s problem. Don’t act like you wouldn’t silently fist pump at least once if the Dodgers brought Schwarber’s prodigious bat to Chavez Ravine.
Dodgers Rumors: Kyle Schwarber on the horizon?
Though Schwarber’s post-deadline time in Boston was a little wonky positionally (he gave himself a standing ovation for making a routine play at first during the ALDS), he became an obvious folk hero, adopting the personality of a local while mashing to the tune of a 154 OPS+, an improvement on his scorching first half in Washington.
If the Dodgers brought Schwarber on board for … three years (?), he’d likely mash all the way to the bank, and it’d really help if the new CBA included a rule catering to bat-first types in the National League. Wink wink.
This still feels rather unlikely, especially since a reported Schwarber-Phillies deal was nearly completed just prior to the lockout (per FanSided’s Robert Murray) and could likely be rekindled as soon as legally allowable, even after the Red Sox traded Hunter Renfroe to clear an outfield spot. But hey, the fine folks at SI can dream!
Anyway, now it’s time to take a victory lap: we predicted it last year. Can we get a hit of that peyote?
As FanSided’s Thomas Carannante wrote at the time:
"That depends on how Schwarber views the fit. Since the Dodgers are letting Joc Pederson go, this could potentially be a match made in heaven. Another lefty power hitter who plays left field? Manager Dave Roberts will find a ton of playing time for Schwarber even if he is considered the team’s fourth outfielder (which he probably will be with AJ Pollock, Cody Bellinger and Mookie Betts as the starting guys).In 2018 and 2019, Pederson managed to play in 148 and 149 games despite there being a crowded outfield. He even logged 43 games in 2020 and would’ve seen more action if he hadn’t gotten injured. It’s understandable that a starting job might be what Schwarber desires, but a high-leverage platoon role could really maximize his efficiency and show his value."
What do you think, Schwarbs? Still down for that high-leverage platoon?