Joctober will longer be, at least not in a Dodger uniform, as Joc Pederson’s six-year tenure with the Los Angeles Dodgers officially ended Friday morning.
Pederson and the Chicago Cubs agreed to a one-year, $7 million deal. During his time for the Dodgers, Pederson hit 130 homers, 303 RBIs and posted a .230 batting average. Throughout the various postseason runs by the Dodgers, Pederson was one of the better hitters, with his career playoff numbers being a .272 batting average along with nine homers, five of those coming in a World Series. His playoff hits are the reason Joctober took off within Dodger fans on social media.
After last season concluded, Pederson was not expected back with the Dodgers by many. His role within the Dodgers was a platoon hitter due to his struggling numbers against left-handed pitching. With the Dodgers locking up Mookie Betts for the rest of his career, it made a Pederson reunion unlikely, at least from an economical stance. Once Betts arrived, Pederson was originally traded to the Angels, but that trade was scrapped at the last minute by Anaheim owner Arte Moreno.
With the Cubs letting go of Kyle Schwarber, it opened up an opportunity for Pederson to play every day in the outfield, something that was not happening with the Dodgers.
Personally, I’m glad Pederson will get to play every day. Hitting at Wrigley Field can really help his numbers compared to many other destinations he could have landed.
In other news, the Dodgers may be a finalist for the services of reigning National Cy Young Winner Trevor Bauer. Several reports circulating in the media have said that Bauer’s final choice could either be the Mets or Dodgers.
The Mets reportedly have offered Bauer a long-term deal, but not close to the number he is looking for. The Dodgers are likely to offer Bauer a short-term deal with a high average annual value (AAV).
A long-term deal with the Dodgers and Bauer is unlikely, due to how many young, loaded arms the Dodgers have throughout the organization.
Justin Turner still remains a free agent, and another Dodger alternative option at third base is likely off the market. Nolan Arenado, who was reported a trading possibility earlier this offseason, may be heading to St. Louis. The Rockies and the Cardinals have been actively talking. For one, if the Dodgers missed out on Arenado, at least they don’t have to see him in the division anymore.
Lastly, Kike Hernandez gave his final farewell to Dodger fans, with a video posted on social media. In the video, he tanked and expressed his gratitude to the Dodger family.