After an up-and-down first 100 games, many Los Angeles Dodgers fans expected the team to be busy during the 2023 MLB trade deadline. And while the team made three separate moves, there's still a lingering feeling among the fanbase that more could have been done.
Granted, it's not all the Dodgers' fault that more moves weren't made. It isn't the team's fault that Eduardo Rodriguez invoked his no-trade clause to block a trade to LA, or that the Houston Astros made a significant overpay to reunite with Justin Verlander.
At the end of the day, the lack of any big moves was extremely disappointing for fans. So let's grade the ones that were actually made.
Multiple Dodgers "cash considerations" trades: F
While the highlight of the trade deadline is the big-league talent that the Dodgers acquired, the team actually made several trades for cash considerations. The players traded away (and the teams they are heading to) are as followed:
- Eddys Leonard (Detroit Tigers)
- Phil Bickford (New York Mets)
- Adam Kolarek (New York Mets)
- Justin Bruihl (Colorado Rockies)
- Andre Jackson (Pittsburgh Pirates)
In the grand scheme of things, most of these moves are inconsequential and these players would have been let go anyway. In the Dodgers' eyes, it's absolutely better to get cash for a player instead of letting them walk for nothing. That part is true.
That being said, there's nothing but downside here for the Dodgers. Getting cash doesn't make the team more competitive, as it doesn't have any sort of advantage towards the luxury tax or international pool money. It's just cash. If any of these players find their footing elsewhere, it's going to be a PR nightmare
The most disappointing is infielder Eddys Leonard, who ranked inside the Dodgers' top 30 on MLB Pipeline before being let go. How weren't the Dodgers able to trade him for anything? Maybe he was part of the nixed Rodriguez trade after being DFA'd by the team, but still, to only get cash for a former top-30 prospect is awful.
Los Angeles also acquired Tyson Miller and Pat Valaika in trades for cash. Miller has a career 8.00 ERA (4.01 ERA in MiLB) and Valaika has a career .642 OPS. Hard to get excited about those two.