3 top prospects Dodgers can afford to trade this offseason
By Adam Weinrib
1. Andre Jackson
The Dodgers have told us what they think of Andre Jackson plenty over the past few years. A ‘tweener who many envision as a bullpen arm, Jackson was passed over plenty of times during 40-man roster shuffles this summer before Los Angeles finally gave him a tap on the shoulder in mid-August.
Facing dire straits, Los Angeles only gave Jackson two appearances in an 11-day span before the end of the month. He got one more on Oct. 3 to wrap up a very impressive season at Triple-A that resulted in precious few big-league opportunities.
The sum total? A 2.31 ERA in 11.2 innings, but a 1.371 WHIP that seems to indicate he got quite lucky in terms of his strand rate (four walks in four innings, but no runs in his MLB debut, for example).
Jackson will be 26 years old by the time the calendar turns to May; it’s truly now or never for him to make a big-league impact, and the Dodgers still seem conflicted about whether his future is in the rotation or the ‘pen, despite a consistently impressive performance across every level in 2019 and 2021.
A bullpen piece who can cover multiple innings is valuable, of course … but the Dodgers seemed to indicate last season that they don’t believe Jackson can be trusted in high-leverage opportunities at the moment, either. They tossed retreads into the fire repeatedly in 2021 (Justin Bruihl? Phil Bickford?) instead of Jackson, and perhaps they were right to do so. If that’s their assessment of his current talent level, though, they should trade their top-15 prospect and Futures Game participant to someone who sees more of an opportunity for him in the immediate future. Because, at his age, there’s not much more time to mess around.