Grading every important offseason move the Dodgers made to set up Yamamoto deal

Los Angeles Dodgers Introduce Shohei Ohtani
Los Angeles Dodgers Introduce Shohei Ohtani / Meg Oliphant/GettyImages
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Dodgers acquire RHP Tyler Glasnow and OF Manuel Margot from the Tampa Bay Rays for RHP Ryan Pepiot and OF Jonny Deluca, sign Glasnow to four-year, $111.5 million extension.

Grade: B+

Glasnow is going to give the Dodgers the top-of-the-rotation starter that L.A. desperately needed, given last year's struggles and injury timetables for RHP Dustin May and Ohtani, who will both likely be unable to pitch in 2024 (though Ohtani will still DH). However, the Dodgers arguably needed quantity as much as they needed quality, so trading away Pepiot, who had a 2.76 ERA in 78.1 innings with the Dodgers across 2022 and 2023, was not an ideal move. The price for Glasnow was obviously not going to be cheap, but perhaps L.A. could have dealt a prospect — Nick Frasso, River Ryan, and Landon Knack are some names that come to mind — who was less MLB-ready to keep the depth of the rotation intact.

Then there is the Margot portion of the deal. While Margot will see significant playing time as a corner outfielder for the Dodgers, the buzz around star OF Randy Arozarena's potential inclusion in a Glasnow deal made everyone wonder what if? Even with Margot, the Dodgers still have the need to find another capable outfielder (bringing Kiké Hernández back to fill that void wouldn't be a bad idea). Pair that uncertainty with the potential injury risk associated with Glasnow, and while this deal will easily make L.A. a better, more experienced team in 2024, there are enough potential downsides to keep this deal out of the A range.

Dodgers sign Yoshinobu Yamamoto to 12-year, $325 million deal

Grade: A

Well, my point about needing quantity and quality came true later on in free agency, when it was announced that the Dodgers signed Japanese superstar Yoshinobu Yamamoto to a 12-year deal. Yamamoto just finished off his third consecutive NPB season with an ERA under 1.68, and was arguably the most sought-after free agent of the offseason other than Ohtani. Yamamoto simultaneously brings more depth to the Dodgers' pitching staff, while also being a front-end starter who could easily become the Opening Day starter for L.A. this March. The Dodgers proved their willingness to break the bank for the right player at the right time by signing Ohtani, and this signing further proved that the Dodgers truly believe in their ability to contend for the next decade while Mookie Betts, Ohtani, and Yamamoto are all under contract.