Dodgers Roster: 4 Surprising Predictions for 2020 Regular Season

Justin-Turner-Alex-Verdugo
(Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

As a prelude to the beginning of spring camp, many media outlets have been featuring previews and predictions as to what may happen with the Dodgers during the next six weeks, offering up some bold forecasts on which big storylines might soon emerge.

To make this perspective even more interesting, I thought I would plunge into the regular season and share a few of my own predictions as to what might conceivably happen with the club’s roster. Of course, there will likely be a number of occurrences that nobody has even considered by the time the All-Star break rolls around, but it still never hurts to stretch the imagination every now and then.

Here are four somewhat surprising roster-related predictions surrounding the team during the upcoming 2020 season:

Alex Verdugo Remains a Dodger—Undoubtedly, the trade speculation between the Dodgers and outfielder Mookie Betts is currently at its peak, as some reporters close to the situation feel that a deal will happen at any moment. Consequently, most believe that outfielder Alex Verdugo will be the centerpiece of the package heading back to Boston. My prediction, though, is that Verdugo remains with the Dodgers throughout the year, garnering more than 400 AB while tallying a .300-plus batting average alongside double digits in doubles, triples, homers and stolen bases. Indeed, health will not be an issue.

Corey Seager Returns to All-Star Form—Subject to trade rumors of his own earlier in the season, it appears as if Corey Seager‘s standing with the club is safe, at least for the first part of the year. Last season, Seager racked up a 3.3 bWAR, slowly re-approaching the 4.6 mark he posted in 2017 and the 5.9 mark during his benchmark year back in 2016. My guess is that he’ll be playing with overwhelming enthusiasm as his free agency year starts to come into sight, tallying more than 40 doubles and 30 long balls in the heart of the lineup. He’ll be just one of a handful of starting players for the Dodgers when Los Angeles hosts the Mid-Summer Classic on July 14.

A Big Roster Shake-Up at Trade Deadline—I’m one of those folks who hasn’t seen the 2019-20 offseason as a big disappointment, especially if the Dodgers do not land Betts. That said, I see the 2020 summer trade deadline as an even bigger opportunity to improve the club’s roster. Primarily, it will allow the team to evaluate its personnel after having more than a half-season under its belt. Second, teams who may have not necessarily been sellers over the winter may emerge as dealers during the summer months when they haven’t lived up to their self-expectations in the win-loss column. I look for some big roster upgrades this summer, specifically in the starting rotation and relief crew.

Clayton Kershaw Proves He’s Worthy—There’s probably no other player on the team in recent years who has faced more scrutiny than Clayton Kershaw. While it’s certainly no major consolation, there may be minor relief in knowing that some of his playoff performances against the Astros and Red Sox may not have been as bad as the box scores indicated. Last year during the regular season, Kersh still had his fair share of critics after posting a 16-5 record and very respectable 3.03 ERA. My prediction is that he throws even better in 2020, while shrinking the number of home runs he allows to under 15. What’s more, skipper Dave Roberts won’t even think twice before naming Kershaw the team’s Opening Day starter on March 26 against the Giants.

 

 

77 thoughts on “Dodgers Roster: 4 Surprising Predictions for 2020 Regular Season

  1. You could be right about Dugo not going anywhere Dennis and that might be what’s holding up any Betts trade. Are you predicting that Betts is traded by ST, and if so, to us? And while you’re making predictions, if you think we’ll be getting Betts and not giving up Verdugo, who are we sending the Sox? And is Price part of the deal? Enough questions for you?

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    1. I still do not think Friedman will agree to Price being part of any deal. Maybe if his contract ran through just the 2020 season, but definitely not for three years and $90+ million. Not sure if Betts deal will happen for certain, but my guess is that there are a ton of details that need to be worked out yet. I’d bet it’s farther away than many believe.

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      1. If you aren’t totally accurate, you’re readers will have to caucus and vote on whether you will be able to continue posting. I cannot guarantee that the results of that caucus will be accurate.

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  2. If it is run by the damnocrats it could take forever! Don’t worry Dennis…I have your back. Jefe is in the minority. I will believe the Betts stuff when i see it.

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      1. I would think you had more smarts than being associated with those…well lets just say less than intellectual giants.

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      2. How dare you! I am an elitist intellectual giant who also happens to be a stable genius (I like to cover all the bases, if you will excuse the baseball reference).

        Liked by 1 person

    1. And if it’s run by Repugnantcans it doesn’t require a majority to win so no need to count the votes. We’ll just by decree announce Dennis as our writer in chief. All in favor – say nothing, all opposed – who gives a sh•t what you think.

      Democracy in action.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Too each his own Scoop. I respect you a lot you know that. But any party, and I do not care which side of the fence you are on who tries to take away my rights and my freedom of choice, well I am against all of them.

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  3. I’ve gotta be honest, Friedman has taken a little of the fun out of it for me with the way he’s run things this offseason. He seems like a guy who can’t make his mind up what he wants to do. Are we cutting salary and going young to stay under the tax or are we trading prospects for win now and blowing over the tax line. I like Betts as a player but is he worth $200 million? That is what you will have to pay him after one year. I don’t believe Verdugo will ever be as good as Betts but I also think he will be a solid all around starting corner outfielder for many years and we have him in his prime for pennies.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A suggestion Alex. If Andrew is driving you crazy, just try not to think about it until he’s done with his moves (or lack thereof) and then figure out if you agree with them. It will save you having to go buy those antacid pills. Now, if I could only follow my own advice.

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    2. Betts will likely be worth $35 million a year for a 5 year run. After that he’s 33 and will have a lot of miles on him. Now it’s possible he can stay healthy enough to play and DH some the last 5 years of his contract. Who knows where $/WAR will be in 5 years, let alone 10. If he can stay in right field for 5 years I think he may be able to earn that 10/$375m by front loading the WAR accumulated during that 28-32 run.

      I say get him and pay what it takes to keep him. If Boston resets, and I believe they will, they will be coming after their guy.

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      1. Other than Chapman going to the Cubs and coming back it’s a very rare thing to have a guy traded and then go back to his old team like that. If Mookie loved Boston so much they would have reached a compromise on an extension. Even if they manage to move Price, they still have Martinez, Sale, Eovaldi and Bogaerts making big money. Not saying Mookie would re-sign here but I very much doubt he’ll go back to Boston.

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  4. If it’s me I’m holding out for a star infielder to make my big trade because you will in all likelihood have to replace Justin Turner after this season. I think Father Time is starting to nip at red just a little bit but I still think he has a decent season.

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    1. Remember, we’ll probably have the DH within 2 years. JT will be able to hit long after his benefit in the field is gone. Let’s not be so quick to cast him aside. He’d make the perfect DH, as far as I’m concerned.

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      1. I would prefer that things be left the way they are also, but I think we’re fighting a losing battle. With that in mind, we have a good candidate in house so let’s not get rid of him so fast. He certainly won’t cost the 20 mil he’s getting this year and he’s one of the few that I think would give a bit of a home town discount.

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    1. Would you be willing to give up that squirt gun you have buried in the closet for when your grandkids visit?
      What if you had to choose between your guns and your guitars?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. First off. I know how to use it, secondly my grand kids are too far away to visit. Third, and most important. I would not use it unless I had to. But, I retain the right to keep and bear arms as afforded me by the Bill of Rights. I took an oath to protect against all enemy’s foreign and domestic. Unfortunately most of our enemy’s are right here at home.

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      2. Luckily Jefe, I can keep both. Guitar not much of a weapon unless you use it like a bat. Since I have a Manny Ramirez model, I could use that instead.

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      1. Obviously you have not read some of the Red Flag laws that are being passed. Your neighbor can say you are a threat and law enforcement can take the weapons, does not matter what type they are. Just enacted by our governor here in Colorado. Luckily so far most of law enforcement refuse to enforce because it denies due process. I have a 45, a 9mm, a 9mm carbine, a 22 rifle and a 12 gauge shotgun. I do not feel the need for an AR or anything like that. But I would rather have one and not need it than need it and not have one.

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      2. That’s not new. You can also SWAT your neighbor. You know about that one?

        The last weapon I owned was an M-16. I haven’t needed one since I turned that in. I couldn’t care less about your personal gun collection. I know you. I trust you. It’s the mentally unhinged psycho with multiple assault rifles, high capacity magazines and bump stocks I’m worried about. There are thousands of those guys in this country. We have not heard the last of them.

        It’s possible to have common sense gun laws. We just need people with common sense running things. Currently, we do not have those people. And if you think cops are there to help you, think again.

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      3. Bear, that’s not nearly near the reality of how “Red Flag” laws work or would work.

        I’d recommend you look into them.

        There’s quite an amount of due process involved.

        Sheesh. The disinformation.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. it’s hard for me to justify paying $35 million year to anyone but maybe Trout but thats where the game is headed. I do like Mookie’s on base ability and speed even though his power numbers will surely fall going from Boston to LA.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The salary’s are nuts these days. I do not think any athlete is worth that kind of money. But that is what the market dictates. But why pay Betts that kind of cash? In a few years you are going to have to pay Bellinger. You want Cody or Betts?

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      1. I think it’s obvious AF isn’t really interested in paying Seager so when it’s contract time for the young guys I think he’s the first to go. Cody and Buehler are the main objectives followed by what to do about Muncy.

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      2. Agreed, except that Seager has a chance to make things difficult for AF by having two really good seasons in ’20 and ’21 and I’m thinking that might very well happen. I do think that Friedman does not view Seager as a long term solution at shortstop (strictly speaking defensively here) so if he doesn’t want to ultimately move to third or first that might also lead to not attempting to re-sign him.

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      3. The threshold will continue to go up every year so if we can AAVs at $35 million we could have 3 guys making that much and still have over $100 million to fill out the roster. If each year we keep bringing in more team controlled players, we can sign the stars we want. Lindor, Betts and Cody leading the way. If we have to go over the threshold? So what?

        Liked by 1 person

    1. IT WONT HAPPEN. That’s just the rale of a dying section of the ultra right. Everybody I knew in Wisconsin had hunting rifles and/or shotguns, and many had a handgun somewhere that they never used. None of them worried me in the least. It’s the mentally ill that own assault rifles that should scare ALL of us. Common sense legislation. It’s long overdue.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. The Red Sox-Dodgers agreement (pending medical reviews) to send Betts and Price to the Dodgers, with OF Alex Verdugo and another prospect (Brusdar Graterol?from the Twins) coming to Boston and a Dodger (Maeda?) going to Minnesota,

    Pederson to LAA in a separate deal, I believe.

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    1. Sending Joc out was just a salary dump I think. This brings them back under the tax.
      So we’ve got Belli in center, Betts in right and Pollock/Beaty/CT3/Kike in left.

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    2. Joc was losing playing time on a significant level with this deal and was leaving next year in any realistic scenario.

      Dodgers get a versatile IF with (most importantly 2 options left.)

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  7. On behalf of the Shlemming Nation, I would like to thank the grassroots people who worked tirelessly to get this deal done and I would like to extend an olive branch to the Anti-Shlemmings and suggest that we all lock arms and march into this new decade in a search for World Peace and a World Series title.

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  8. Word on the street (no, I don’t know which street) has it that AF will definitely try to extend Betts before the end of the season. He has loved him for a long time and, although he might not get an extension done or ultimately re-sign him, he didn’t make the trade with the idea that Mookie would only be here for one year.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s why it was only Verdugo and Graterol. Of course the 50 mil coming back is nice. I accept the Schlemmings were right and I was wrong. That is as close as we are going to get to locking arms.

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  9. Well I am officially eating a little crow. Dodgers give up Verdugo, and the kid they got from Minnesota for Maeda and get Price,Betts and 50 million bucks. Joc to the Angels is a little more head scratching. Renigfo is another middle infielder, so maybe you guys are right and Joc is a salary dump. But they have not even finished his arbitration hearing yet, so just how much he is making is not known. But it also thins out the outfield log jam a little. SD must be nauseous this evening. Seeing how little the Dodgers really traded. In actuality Jefe, it was 3 different deals. Maeda to Minnesota for Graterol, Then Verdugo and Graterol to Boston for Betts, Price and 50 million dollars, and then Joc to the Angels. At least Joc can keep some of his fans there in California…….but I still ain’t wearing no Schlemming T shirt.

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      1. Ha, I am spelling it correctly. I am spelling it the way a German would. And since I am part German, well take that.

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  10. Kudo’s to AF. This was a great deal for us. One year of Joc, Verdugo and Maeda for Mookie and Price at 15 mil. Hate to lose Verdugo but NONE of our other top prospects involved. Can’t believe Boston fans happy with this deal! And we still,let’s in the chamber for a deadline deal!

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    1. Boston fans might be unhappy tonight but they got two pretty good prospects. They were going to give up Betts anyway and they managed to dump Price in the deal also. I think Bloom did OK for himself. Obviously thinks he can’t compete with the Yanks and Rays this year so is looking to the future and now has some flexibility. We only gave up one prospect and an unhappy pitcher and, as you point out, have money to spend in July. Win-win.

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  11. Depends on where you live Jesus. There are lawmakers in Colorado who say our state law violates due process in a common sense way. And there are some who are sure that sooner or later the Supreme Court will declare the law unconstitutional.

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    1. Bear

      The Colorado red flag law is nothing like you intone.

      1. A judge makes the final call.
      2. It’s a temporary taking.
      3. The law says only law enforcement and family or household members can ask a judge to remove somebody’s firearms.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am telling you what some Colorado law makers have said. Yeah, the judge makes the final call. And you can have the government pay for your lawyer. But I do not like the law. So sue me. I think it is unnecessary. If there were stats that said this law was needed maybe. But I do think that if someone is under a psychological exam, or known to have problems then ok, take the weapon. But I undergo thorough back ground checks to just purchase a weapon.

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      2. Yeah, I see that end of the argument. But I guess you are not anywhere near the target, nor the reason behind the case.

        Domestic violence is a big driver, as is mental illness (that can obviously set in after the background check is completed.)

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