Get ready, Dodger fans, a trade for Giancarlo Stanton might be the spark the Dodgers need to win the World Series in 2018. Picture this: Stanton in left, Chris Taylor in center, and Yasiel Puig in right. Should this dream outfield become a reality, the Dodgers will have flipped the script of the 2018 season.
There have been some trade talks between the Dodgers and the Marlins, but a deal isn’t close yet. The main concern, for any team looking to trade for Stanton, is the contract. Should Stanton not opt out of his contract through its entirety, he’ll be making $310 million, playing with the same team until his age 38 season. It’s a big contract, but when you hit 59 home runs, which he did in 2017, signing him long-term is worth it.
In order for any team to make a trade for the Marlins slugger, three things need to be considered; the contract, whether they have tradeable players and prospects, and what trading for Stanton means long term.
The Contract—$310 million dollars is a lot. There’s no other way to describe it. For the next ten years, Stanton will be making an average of 31 million a year, and not all teams can afford it.
The Dodgers can afford it.
The Marlins are unlikely to take on a majority of Stanton’s contract, given that they are headed towards a rebuild, but depending on what happens this offseason, the Dodgers payroll could either decrease or increase regardless of Stanton’s contract.
Los Angeles, being a big market in a massive city, are the perfect place for a super-star slugger like Stanton.
The Prospects—I’m sentimental. The idea of trading away players from a team that almost won the World Series together is borderline heart-breaking, but I’m always reminded of the bigger picture. This isn’t just an outfielder, this is Giancarlo Stanton. He’s one of the best sluggers baseball has ever seen, and at the end of the day, a World Championship is the ultimate goal. Stanton can help the Dodgers get there.
Should Miami agree on a trade with another club, they would officially enter a period of rebuilding. This means that the Marlins will most likely be looking for prospects, as opposed to players already in the majors, in a trade package. Los Angeles has been known not to trade away their top prospects. In recent years, Joc Pederson, Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger sat atop the list of some of the Dodgers’ best prospects. It’s safe to say, not trading those three, among others, was a good call.
Of the Dodgers’ current prospects, Walker Buehler, who made his MLB debut earlier this year, seems like the only definite untouchable. Possibly headed to Miami could be Double-A Catcher Keibert Ruiz and/or outfielder Yusniel Diaz. Though nothing has been even close to confirmed, Ruiz and Diaz are two of the Dodgers best prospects that could end up being great for the Marlins in two or three years.
Other teams have deep farm systems, but not every team will be able to put together a trade package that Miami accepts, and not all of them can take on Stanton’s contract.
The Dodgers have the payroll flexibility to pay Stanton, and they have the prospects. The last thing to be considered is this; how does Stanton fit into the club long term?
The Long Term—The Dodgers plan to be good for a long time. That is a fact that was proven this past October. The Dodgers plan to be good, and it’s easy to believe that they will be, based off of what the world saw this year. There are a handful of teams out there that would be great fits for Stanton, and virtually all of those teams have the payroll and the prospects.
But there is one, final question that begs to be asked: How does Stanton fit in with the team in which he will play for, for the foreseeable future?
The Dodgers have Puig in right field, and unless he’s traded, he will be the Dodgers’ everyday right fielder. Stanton, though, could become one of the best left fielders baseball has ever seen.
Then there’s this, which is probably the most important aspect of a trade for Stanton—he wants to play here. The Dodgers have a reputation for signing players and trading for players that want to be in Los Angeles. Their clubhouse atmosphere is a passionate, and positive one.
In order to simplify this, and make sense of it, we have to ask ourselves these questions.
Do the Dodgers need to trade for or sign another slugger?
Can they afford Stanton’s contract?
Is there a place for him in the outfield?
Does Stanton want to play here?
Should the Dodgers trade for Stanton, given that everything falls into place?
A trade for Giancarlo Stanton makes sense, it doesn’t mean it’s going to happen, but it creates a logical opportunity.
The Dodgers were great in 2017. Stanton makes them better. All we can do now is wait and see.
(FOLLOW SARAH ON TWITTER: @SARAHMANINGER)