Think Trea Turner is for sure leaving the Los Angeles Dodgers, haters? Think again! The power of winning and team chemistry. It works. You should try it sometime. Though Turner is far from signing on the dotted line, the Dodgers have made a compelling case to retain the star shortstop.
It won’t be easy for LA, either. Turner is poised to be arguably the best player on the market come November and adding another $250-plus million contract to the books might not be automatically green lit by the team’s ownership group with Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman in town for quite some time.
If fans were to guess, however, the Dodgers would sign off on a contract for Turner if he wanted to stay. This team is a juggernaut. It’s not going to get better without Turner, who’s smack dab in the middle of his prime. If you have to pay for the regression, then so be it.
Earlier in the year, Turner’s contract year was beginning to be characterized by the 29-year-old “preferring” an east coast team or one that holds spring training in Florida (where he’s from). It’s unclear if that’s true, but Turner was recently asked about it.
He mentioned that “everything is in play” when he hits the open market and also acknowledged that returning to the east coast would be of interest to him, but that “LA’s been really good to” him.
Trea Turner doesn’t rule out re-signing with Dodgers in free agency
Though he also said the contract extension talks with the Dodgers didn’t really get anywhere this past offseason, he followed that up with “but I’m sure we’ll be talking in a few weeks.”
Then again, when you think about it, how far could they really have gone? Turner knows his value, as does his agency, and these situations typically dictate the player hitting free agency, shopping around, and getting maximum value. Very rarely does a star player get top of market value by negotiating with one organization. Easy to chalk that up to a “business decision” on both sides.
On the other hand, of course Turner wasn’t going to “rule out” the Dodgers at this juncture. On what planet was he going to create unnecessary bad press surrounding the league’s best team? It does, however, help that he was candid about the whole “east coast” thing that had Dodgers fans worrying about him bolting after the World Series.
The Dodgers uniquely have themselves set up to add another big contract to the books (in addition to a number of other impact players). Andrew Friedman would likely gladly spend big on a shortstop of Turner’s caliber, especially after letting Corey Seager go once he was outbid by the Texas Rangers.
Turner’s better than Seager, though. He’s a five-tool player and has proven to be extremely durable four out of the last five years. With no shortstop in tow outside of Gavin Lux shifting over from second base, fans are confident the front office will make as aggressive a play as possible for Turner, especially if all options are indeed on the table for him.