What would Dodgers have done with Trea Turner if Corey Seager re-signed?
All we have are hypotheticals at this point, and it’s worth discussing what the Los Angeles Dodgers might’ve done if Corey Seager had opted to re-sign instead of going after the money with the lowly Texas Rangers.
It’s clear Andrew Friedman and Co. traded for shortstop Trea Turner in what was a hybrid plan — build a super team in 2021 and provide admirable insurance should Seager leave. They accomplished both objectives, but injuries ended up being LA’s undoing.
Should we explore a third scenario, though? What if Seager returned on an eight-year deal? What if Turner wanted to maximize his free agent value by playing shortstop in 2022? Would there have been another trade this offseason? Would Turner have been sent out before the start of next season?
At the very least, MLB insider Jon Heyman revealed that other teams were wondering the same thing, and were ready to call the Dodgers had Seager remained with the club.
Would the Dodgers have traded Trea Turner if Corey Seager re-signed?
Here’s what Heyman said on MLB Network:
"“I’ve heard this speculation from other teams — not the Dodgers — what if they do re-sign Seager? Could somebody then maybe trade for Turner? Turner was brought in as a great second baseman and did a great job, but also, as a backup plan to Seager, if they have Seager signed for whatever, a nine-year deal, Turner is going to be a second baseman. He may have more value somewhere else as a shortstop and there are a lot of other teams looking at shortstops.”"
Throw in the fact Turner is due nearly $20 million in 2022 and the Dodgers could’ve considered replenishing the top end of their farm system after surrendering their top to prospects to the Nationals at the trade deadline. Not a crazy idea! Additionally, Turner is entering a contract year. Would he really have wanted to play second base for a full season instead of shortstop, which would undoubtedly increase his value?
With the Dodgers seemingly wanting to see Gavin Lux’s ceiling coupled with the option of adding Freddie Freeman and shifting Max Muncy over to second base, trading Turner, a premium player at arguably the most important position on the field, would’ve been realistic in this situation that never came to be.
Right now, Turner will likely be the team’s starting shortstop on Opening Day come 2022. But what about the year after? That’s an entirely real discussion we might be having soon if the Dodgers don’t extend the speedster when the lockout is lifted.