3 teams Dodgers must outbid at 2022 MLB trade deadline

Adam Weinrib
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JULY 19: Luis Castillo #58 of the Cincinnati Reds smiles in the dugout in the fifth inning during the 92nd MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard at Dodger Stadium on July 19, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - JULY 19: Luis Castillo #58 of the Cincinnati Reds smiles in the dugout in the fifth inning during the 92nd MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard at Dodger Stadium on July 19, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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Kevin Gausman #34 of the Toronto Blue Jays (Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images) /

2. Toronto Blue Jays

After struggling sleeplessly in Seattle and scuffling with the vaccinated Royals’ B-Squad, perhaps the Blue Jays aren’t in dire straits after all. A stunning weekend in Boston — highlighted by a 28-5 drubbing on Friday night at Fenway — has cemented the Jays as Wild Card leaders and a potential upset pick in a best-of-five ALDS.

In order to secure that reputation, they might double down on their rumored pursuit of Castillo, too, which has stopped and started repeatedly over the past year. There’s history here, and a Kevin Gausman-Alek Manoah-Castillo front three looms deadly.

As for the bullpen component … the Blue Jays are famous for pursuing ‘pen help every summer, and they typically get way ahead of the deadline to make it happen at a discount. Recent deals for Adam Cimber, David Phelps, and Trevor Richards have shown that Toronto is never fully satisfied on that front.

Each one of those trades have only momentarily quelled the need for true, shutdown arms in the back end, and even All-Star closer Jordan Romano has looked quite mortal in 2022, especially on the road.

If Toronto wants to be feared when they hold a lead at the end of games, after the offense has come to life, they’ll need to aim higher than the Dodgers’ mid-tier bullpen targets. LA’s front office can’t let them settle, though. It may be a secondary need behind the Castillo chase, but Toronto has a chance to be a genuine thorn in the Dodgers’ side this summer.

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