Dodgers should thank Red Sox every day for handing them Teoscar Hernández

Los Angeles Dodgers v New York Yankees
Los Angeles Dodgers v New York Yankees / Luke Hales/GettyImages
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Like most of this past offseason's crop, Teoscar Hernández remained a free agent longer than anyone expected. There was little news on where he might move through November and December, then a flurry of rumors connecting him to the Dodgers and Red Sox in early January before he finally signed with LA on Jan. 7 for one year and $23.5 million.

He wasn't the only player the Dodgers would seemingly swipe from right under the Red Sox's noses; Boston was reportedly interested in re-signing James Paxton when he hit free agency, but he turned west and signed with LA instead (and for a steal, at that). However, the Red Sox were plainly unwilling to spend money that they do have, and their fans were forced to watch both players walk.

After Hernández's deal was official, he seemingly threw shade at the Red Sox's laughable offseason, which gave us the now-infamous vow from chairman Tom Werner to go "full-throttle" on the free agent market, by saying that the outfielder wanted to go somewhere he could win. Very simply, the Red Sox didn't want to give him the years or the money he was gunning for.

Teoscar Hernández's huge weekend with Dodgers might've never happened if Red Sox had been willing to spend money

Things haven't worked out too terribly for the Red Sox, even with their terrible offseason and sort of patchwork roster; they're third in the AL East, sitting at .500, and they're on the cusp of the last AL Wild Card spot with a lot of time left in the regular season to wiggle into it. However, Hernández has already well exceeded his performance last year with the Mariners, in Seattle's hitter-unfriendly T-Mobile Park, and is on track to break his fWAR record of 2.9 in 2022.

Hernández's walk rate is up and strikeout rate down from last season, and he's on pace to pass both his home run and RBI numbers as a Mariner. Not to mention his heroics from the past weekend, when he hit three home runs with nine RBI and 17 total bases at Yankee Stadium's hostline environment. Overall, he's been crucial to the lower half of the Dodgers lineup, which has been dragging the team down significantly.

So Dodgers fans have to tip their caps to the Red Sox front office for being so deeply averse to spending money that Hernández ran all the way to the opposite coast. Shoutout to Tom Werner and Craig Breslow!

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