While the 2022 trade deadline is shaping up to be one of the most hectic of all time, that’s kind of how you know it probably won’t be. Nothing ever lives up to that kind of hype.
So in the event everyone’s underwhelmed, Los Angeles Dodgers fans need to keep their eyes on some under-the-radar candidates Andrew Friedman might be forced to pursue should the top options either be too expensive or remain with their current teams.
The biggest area of need for the Dodgers is pitching of all kinds, but particularly the bullpen, where the losses of Blake Treinen, Brusdar Graterol, Victor Gonzalez and Tommy Kahnle have really put a strain on the current cast.
LA simply can’t keep trotting Phil Bickford out there with his 5.68 ERA. Craig Kimbrel isn’t the closer everyone thought he might be. Alex Vesia has taken a step back. Though Yency Almonte and Evan Phillips have taken pleasant, unexpected leaps, that won’t be enough to lead the charge through October.
Some of the aforementioned injured players will eventually return, but there’s no guarantee they’ll be as effective as they once were. The Dodgers need as much insurance as they can get because … is David Price actually going to be relied upon as the stakes get higher? Hope not!
3 under-the-radar relievers Dodgers could target at trade deadline
3. Tanner Scott
First up, a lefty! The Dodgers need another one, and perhaps they might view Marlins closer (?) Tanner Scott has a viable (and quick) reclamation project. Scott’s ERA (4.32) and WHIP (1.42) are unsightly, but he’s got 13 saves, 59 strikeouts in 41.2 innings, and a 3.46 FIP. Maybe things aren’t so bad!
Then you peek at the advanced metrics and, oh man, this has “Dodgers” written all over it. You thought Andrew Heaney’s peripherals revealed room for improvement? Scott’s Baseball Savant Page is mostly all bright red, with the exception of walk percentage (2nd percentile!). Every other important metric (average exit velocity, hard hit percentage, expected batting average, expected slugging, whiff percentage, strikeout percentage and fastball spin) are all among the best in the league.
Don’t you forget about Scott’s shortened 2020 season, which was essentially his breakout (1.31 ERA, 1.07 WHIP in 25 games). Something’s there. Scott could be had for very little and could be “untapped” relatively quickly under the Dodgers’ tutelage.