The Los Angeles Dodgers filled an outfield vacancy this season with a former veteran Arizona Diamondback, leaving the Diamondbacks free to add a different veteran outfielder midseason who turned their clubhouse around while being their strongest hitter through the first three games of the World Series.
The Dodgers' choice? Uh ... is an 81 OPS+ good? What if we told you it came with a choo-choo train celebration, does that change things?
LA's 2022-23 offseason makeover included flyers on both David Peralta and Jason Heyward, with that signing presumably coming at Freddie Freeman's behest. The Heyward addition worked spectacularly; the veteran's rejuvenated swing played extremely well at Dodger Stadium, as did his unique brand of clubhouse glue.
Peralta, though, was less of a fit. He might've appeared joyful in the dugout, but his bat weighed a top-heavy lineup down. Nonetheless ... he was the Dodgers' choice, and nothing in the offseason could stop it. Even Pham himself, who revealed after his 4-for-4 Game 2 that he called Andrew Friedman twice and received two separate, "No"s about potentially joining the Dodgers this offseason.
He also admitted that two Dodgers players advocated on his behalf, to no avail.
Dodgers turned down Tommy Pham twice this offseason despite protests
Pham remains in the MLB postseason, hoping to dig his D-Backs out of yet another playoff series hole. Peralta? He's at home searching for his next venture after getting shamed for an ill-timed celebration.
It gets worse. At the trade deadline, Pham was reportedly considered by the Dodgers yet again:
"Knowing Pham was available, Dodgers teammates Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez vouched for him, according to Pham. A person with knowledge of the Dodgers’ thinking but not authorized to speak publicly confirmed Martinez “said good things about him” and Pham was among the targets they considered."- LA Times
Pham reportedly retains no "hard feelings" about being bypassed repeatedly, but he didn't allow that lack of agitation to prevent him from three-game sweeping the Dodgers out of the playoffs and outlasting them significantly.
Now, he's still active, while Friedman, Peralta and Heyward are at home pondering next steps with Betts at the World Series answering questions about Trevor Bauer for some reason. Checkmate yet again to the 35-year-old outfielder with an eternal chip on his shoulder.