The MLB Winter Meetings are just days away, and thus far the Los Angeles Dodgers have been frustratingly quiet (much like everybody else) but are hopefully working on something big as to not leave Nashville empty-handed. Very little has happened on the free agent or trade market. It seems that all 30 teams (with the exception of maybe the Cardinals) are engaged in a playground standstill, all circling each other with fists up while waiting for the others to start throwing punches.
Still, the Dodgers have been "involved" on various players more so than a number of big market teams. If something big is brewing for any of them, it's probably the Dodgers, who have a lot of money and shouldn't be afraid to use it.
Last year at the Winter Meetings, they managed to keep Clayton Kershaw in LA, but lost out on all of the big pitching talent and saw Trea Turner move across the country for an absolutely ridiculous sum of money. Hopefully, that kind of passivity won't be a part of their approach this year. Here are three deals the Dodgers could get done (and probably need to get done) at Winter Meetings this year.
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Sign Shohei Ohtani and Yoshinobu Yamamoto in a one-two punch
At this point, anything positive you can say about Shohei Ohtani or Yoshinobu Yamamoto is just restating the obvious: two-time unanimous MVP and the most special player we've maybe ever seen, three-time Japanese Triple Crown winner in consecutive years and the most exciting international signing since the aforementioned MVP, and so on and so on. Waiting on a decision from Ohtani has rivaled, if not completely surpassed, the Aaron Judge sweepstakes last year. The Yamamoto buzz, while less intense, has also been cause for suspense. Could the Dodgers finally put all of us out of our misery by signing both of them at Winter Meetings?
Ohtani being the first domino to fall just makes sense: get him, see where you're at with money, and decide if you can afford Yamamoto as well. If you can (and the Dodgers can), you'll have acquired not only this offseason's white whale, but someone who will in turn entice an international free agent who wants to join a team with another Japanese player. While teams like the Red Sox, who are apparently out on Ohtani but still in on Yamamoto, are having to chose between one or the other, it doesn't seem like the Dodgers aren't so worried about an either/or situation.
The Dodgers have been the supposed frontrunners in the Ohtani race for a long time, and seeing as three teams are reported to have backed off, there's all the more reason to put money on LA. Meanwhile, Yamamoto was spotted in the front row at a Lakers game, fanning the flames of a potential one-two signing in the works. If the Dodgers could get both done at the Winter Meetings, they might as well just put their feet up, take a nice little break, and enjoy Nashville for a few days.
Maybe one more trade and a couple of depth signings are necessary, but the heavily lifting will be done.