1. Shohei Ohtani
It’s probably not possible, but it’s worth asking about! Before last year’s trade deadline when the Angels collapsed and saw their season end in early June, multiple teams reportedly called LA about Ohtani’s availability. Everyone was turned down, but that didn’t stop any rival general manager from making an offer.
The Dodgers were among those to inquire, only to be told it’ll cost them at least their top four prospects (just like everybody else). For 1.5 years of Ohtani … who will be earning $30 million in 2023? Probably worth it, but the Dodgers have other plans, and trading their top 4-6 prospects really derails their vision. And Ohtani — for as great as he is — can’t help fill out a roster in need of a third baseman, shortstop and left fielder, at the very least.
What could talks look like now that he has one year left of control at that official $30 million price tag? Well, it still seems hefty. The Athletic seems to think it’ll cost LA seven of their top 14 prospects. Would Friedman consider that when he can just wait until next year to sign him? Really doubtful.
But it can’t hurt to make the call. The Angels are in much greater need of a few, talented top prospects than they are of one more year of Ohtani. This team is still ways away from contention — barring the most impressive offseason of any team — and it’s unlikely Ohtani stays. If the price drops, you just never know where the conversation goes. And if the Dodgers can get an ace who carries one of the best lefty bats in the league, they’d be knocking out two important needs on their offseason checklist.