2 Dodgers moves Andrew Friedman deserves praise for and 2 that deserve scorn in 2023
By Eric Treuden
Andrew Friedman should've never signed David Peralta
There was no real way that bringing an outfielder in his mid-30s aboard to play nearly every day for the Dodgers was a good idea. So far, David Peralta has been doing everything he can to prove that that's true.
Peralta, a longtime member of the division-rival Diamondbacks, had turned himself into a good outfielder over the years, winning both a Silver Slugger (2018) and Gold Glove (2019) along the way. He has been right around league-average with the bat but had a hard time getting things going last year.
Through 20 games in 2023, Peralta has a .208 average with 10 strikeouts in 48 at-bats. He's recorded just two extra-base hits and has an OPS+ of 42, meaning he's 58% below league-average to kick things off. Fortunately, he's playing out a cheap contract, but his presence has been something of an eyesore so far. The Dodgers could've spent $6.5 million more wisely.
Cody Bellinger should've never been let go by the Dodgers
The current season didn't get off to the best start for Cody Bellinger, but he's caught fire lately and shown the Dodgers exactly why he should've been given a longer leash.
Throughout his six-year tenure in Los Angeles, Bellinger experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. He won a Rookie of the Year and MVP Award, made two All-Star Games, and even turned himself into one of the best defensive outfielders in the league.
Then the wheels began to come off and he spiraled quickly. In 2021 and 2022, Bellinger hit a combined 29 home runs in 239 games, good for a .193 average and 65 OPS+. No matter which way you look at it, he was one of the worst hitters around.
Naturally, it took him being non-tendered for him to return to his old ways. It's still early in the current campaign, but his loss hurts more and more every day as the Dodgers continue to trot out has-beens like Peralta and Jason Heyward while the Cubs may have found an All-Star as Bellinger's could be experiencing a resurgence.