Dodgers News and Notes – No Freeman Decision Yet, New Broadcasters and Players, and More

The Los Angeles Dodgers are finally all back in Spring Training, and it remains uncertain who else will be joining them at Camelback Ranch.

As of Tuesday morning, highly coveted free agent Freddie Freeman had yet to chose a team. On Monday, his prior team, the Atlanta Braves, made a huge trade with the Oakland Athletics to bring All-Star first baseman Matt Olson to Atlanta in exchange for four prospects. One would assume that that means that Freeman will not be returning to Atlanta.

The Dodgers were said to be the front runners for the 2020 NL MVP, but in recent days other teams have started making a stronger push for Freeman. The Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees, Tampa Bay Rays, and Boston Red Sox have all shown interest in the first baseman, who is weighing all offers before deciding where he will most likely spend the remainder of his career.

If the Dodgers do not end up signing Freeman, it will interesting to see where they pivot. They do not need Freeman, as they have a first baseman in Max Muncy, as well as a rotating cast of players who can spell him there, but acquiring a player of Freeman’s caliber would keep them at the top of the NL teams, competing with both the Braves and New York Mets for NL supremacy.

In a surprise on Monday, the Cincinnati Reds seem to be in sell mode, as they traded outfielder Jesse Winkler and infielder Eugenio Suarez to the Seattle Mariners. No doubt president of Baseball Operations Andrew Freidman has checked in with the Reds about Joey Votto, Luis Castillo, and others.

There are a few new faces in Dodgers camp. The team added a few players as non-roster invites. They include 3B/1B Jake Lamb, and right handed pitchers Yency Almonte, Reyes Moronta, and Mike Wright. They also signed 29 year old infielder Hander Alberto to a major league contract, with a club option for 2023.

There will new faces on the Dodgers broadcast team as well. Along with the current group of Joe Davis, Orel Hershiser, Jaime Jarrín, Fernando Valenzuela, Charley Steiner, Rick Monday, Nomar Garciaparra, Pepe Yñiguez, Jerry Hairston Jr, John Hartnung, Tim Neverett and Kirsten Watson, the broadcast will expand to include new and old faces alike.

José Mota, Jessica Mendoza, Eric Karros, Adrián González, and Dontrelle Willis will all be involved in some capacity in both television and/or radio sides, as well as studio shows.

Davis’s main partner Orel Hershiser had asked to step back a bit from his job as color analyst, and as such Mendoza, Willis and Karros will be joining Davis on the road for some games. González will be in studio pre and post game.

Joe Kelly has signed a two-year contract with the Chicago White Sox, and will not be returning to the Dodgers bullpen. Kelly had previously said that there was mutual interest in his return, but that is not to be. We wish Mariachi Joe the best in his new home in Chicago.

The Dodgers announced on Monday that they will be unveiling a Sandy Koufax statue in the centerfield plaza on June 18. Dennis covered all the details here.

Trea Turner has said that he is open to contract extensions with the Dodgers, and could compartmentalize between the negotiations and his play on the field. Turner also said that while he will miss Corey Seager, he is excited to get to play shortstop again, and show what he can do there.

The Dodgers are also said to be interested in free agent Jorge Soler, the 2021 WS MVP. Soler would provide a big power bat, mostly at the DH position.

The next few days should be pivotal for the Dodgers in the quest to solidify the team. Stay tuned.

39 thoughts on “Dodgers News and Notes – No Freeman Decision Yet, New Broadcasters and Players, and More

  1. Saw a lot of Jake Lamb when he was with Arizona. He peaked at 26. Don’t know about those other guys. Camp fodder I assume.

    Not crazy about Hershiser in the booth and that seems like a lot of names added. Do we really need that many people?

    Would sure like to see Freeman make a choice. You’re going to make millions no matter where you go, so, choose already.

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  2. I seriously doubt that Andrew has offered Freeman a 6 year deal. If he had been willing to give him the 6/180 that everyone assumed he was looking for, he would be a Dodger by now. I’m guessing the offer is something like 4/150 and maybe the hold up is now over a fifth year.

    If we wind up signing Freddie, I don’t see how that leaves money to bring back Trea. I would prefer to have Trea. Of course, even though he says he’d be willing to talk extension, it doesn’t mean he would actually sign, so a bird in the hand…………………………..wait a minute. We don’t have that bird in hand yet. I’m going to just sit back and watch it all unfold.

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    1. It’s not the years, it’s the money. Freeman will likely be a 4-5 WAR player for at least 3 more years. If he gets 4 and 150 why does he need a 5th year? 4 years takes him to age 35 year. If he is serious about taking care of himself he can go Cruz and DH until he’s 42 so there’s another $100 million to be made after this contract, and maybe with the Dodgers if he likes it here. The man has already made over $133 million. He’s a cinch to enter into that $300+ million category that’s popular now, so enough already – pick a f’n team and get to camp.

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      1. Your logic is exemplary, Scoop, but players and their agents are always looking to make things “better for future generations of ballplayers”. At least that’s the reason they use publicly for keeping these kinds of negotiations going for longer than you and I would ever dream of doing.

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  3. At this stage I don’t agree that the Dodgers have 1B covered with Muncy + some backups. With the kind of injury he had, along with the long time when he couldn’t move his elbow normally, he may never have the kind of swing he had.
    I’ll put forward this idea why Hanser Alberto is a good signing. Despite being overall a utility infielder type, he’s hit well against LH pitching over his career (.815 ops). That allows him to be a good platoon for Lux at 2B, if Lux never learns to hit LH pitching. That frees up C. Taylor (the obvious platoon for Lux) to play CF, which frees up Bellinger to play 1B.

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    1. Good point, Waldo. We really don’t know if Max’s swing will ever be the same.
      I have no problem with the Alberto signing and your scenario makes perfect sense, if needed.

      For those who haven’t heard yet, Anthopoulos just tore up Olson’s 2 year contract and signed him for 8/168. So he gave up a guy who wanted 30 mil per year and got a 5-year younger, possibly just as good player for 21 mil per year. Mr. Anthopoulos does not get nearly enough credit for the work he does. This on top of winning the WS last year while totally rebuilding his outfield in the middle of the season, overcoming the loss of one of the top 5 players in baseball to injury and one of his major power contributors to a suspension. The guy is brilliant.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I thought my offer for Olson was good enough to get him. He is a Georgia native so that might have helped Atlanta sign him to a long term contract. I wish it were the Dodgers though.

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    1. Sounds like it’s down to Dodgers, Padres, Blue Jays, Red Sox.
      I’ve read where the Jays think he’s not too likely to sign with them and they’re making a big push for Schwarber.
      If Preller can somehow manage to unload Hosmer in the next couple of days, I think they’ll be strong contender.
      In the meanwhile, I think we need another starter more than we need another first baseman.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Schwarber went to the Phillies and the Jays just traded for Chapman. I thought the one thing the new CBA was supposed to stop is tanking. The A’s will be lucky to win 49 games.

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    1. We go through this every year, Bear. Andrew tends to act late in the game, although in this case it may be Freddie’s fault that nothing is happening on that front.

      Remember the year we got Mookie? You kept on insisting that AF would never do a big deal, and then Bam!

      I would say you can be officially unimpressed when we get to opening day and he still only has Alberto on his score card. Let Mr. Deliberate work his magic. I think we’ll have a pretty decent starter here by the weekend. As far as Freddie is concerned, I don’t blame AF for having a limit he won’t cross.

      There – no sooner do we discuss this than Andrew signs a pitcher. Shane Greene on a minor league deal. What? You say that doesn’t count?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hardeharhar. Greene is fodder. Alberto Alonso, they both start with an A and end with O. Freeman should not be his only target for the big team. I am not totally down with Kersh coming back. Oh he is a Dodger Icon and all, but he is no where the same pitcher he was a few years ago. He is now injury prone. The bench has not been addressed in my mind, and it was down right pitiful last year.

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      2. Hah! I was so anxious to make my point that I didn’t even notice the Alonso thing. I hope he does well enough for us that neither of us ever makes that mistake again.

        I have no problem with bringing Kersh back. I would have a problem if they were absolutely counting on him to pitch for a full season. That’s why I told you we’d have a new pitcher here by this weekend. There will also be one or two bench pieces added. Patience, my good man, patience.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. t least I won’t have to worry about them bringing up Neuse. He was just claimed off waivers by the A’s. Makes sense since they are gutting the team. They don’t want another Muncy on their record. Reds are selling everyone too. They just traded Garrett.

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      4. Jeff is right. This isn’t all AF is going to do it just sucks that we have to wait to know what it is. We need a left handed bat and another starter. And I don’t know what you’re saying with Kershaw. I don’t think anyone expects him to the #1 starter that he was. Buehler and Urías are better than him now. But a 3.55 ERA is not terrible, and at the beginning of the season before his injuries he was much better than that. He’s about a solid #3 as you can get. After him it gets a little worrisome, with Heaney and Gonsolin until May comes back. Kershaw is not the issue here. He also re-signed for half of what he was getting before. I have no doubt AF has a lot of balls in the air and will get the team what it needs

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  4. To tell you the truth Jefe, I don’t care if they sign Freeman or not. With him they are a better team, without, still pretty good. But if you let the competition get better without doing something significant, well, you are not doing your job. I think they need at least one very good starting pitcher. Bauer would fit the bill if he is allowed to play. If not, they need to trade or sign one. The bench sucks. We have no clue what they are going to get out of the returning injured guys. There is no RH power off of the bench. None. I just believe as I have all winter, there are some HUGE holes on this team. Yeah, AF will surprise us somewhere along the way, but games start in two days. Freeman, if he was signing, should have been in camp three days ago.

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  5. Freeman earned this free agency, it’s not his fault the owners decided to lockout the players for so long, so I tend to give him a pass on taking his time, to make the right decision for him. I would like to hear a rumor about us being in on a trade for a SP, maybe Montas, Castillo, or Mahle

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  6. Lucky for us bear, the other teams in the NL west haven’t done that much this off season, so far. The Giants did a good job on signing Rodon, but other than that, I can’t think of any significant deals, in the NL west.

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  7. I’m with you Andy, as long as Clayton’s elbow doesn’t turn into a TJ injury, I’m confident he’ll put up solid, if not better, numbers for the Dodgers this season.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Greinke going back to the Royals on a one year deal, 13 mil with another 2 mil available in incentives. Keith, LA really does not have much competition in the NL West except for the Pads and Giants and both are a little weaker right now. But that does not mean they are not going to have to fight off the Mets and the Braves who both have improved. You want best record in the league to insure home field advantage.

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    1. I guess money is more important than winning for Mr. Bryant. I’m sure he had offers from contending teams but also pretty sure that no one came very close to 7/187 which is what he reportedly signed for.

      On the other hand, Denver is a nice place to live and it’s in the same state as Bear.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. C’mon man. It’s where he grew up and his family still lives there.
        It’s not like Andrew offered him more to come back here. I have no problem with it. I just hope he doesn’t play well against us.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Sorry, he could have signed anywhere else and I would not care. But being a Dodger and going to the Giants is being a traitor! I do not talk to my daughter a whole lot because she is a Giant fan now. I taught her better. LOL. Oh yeah, as of 10:23 tonight, Morosi and Rosenthal reporting that Freeman and the Dodgers are this () close to a deal. 6/160 or so is the number. And the talks are deadly serious. Could be announced by morning. Hello second baseman Max Muncy.

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      3. Denver is becoming LA midwest. Nice town in most area’s but if you dislike cold weather, not a place to be.

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  9. Joc Pederson is going home. Signed a one-year deal with the Giants.
    Probably a dream come true for him. He grew up in Palo Alto and I think his family still lives there.

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    1. True, he did grow up in Palo Alto but was headed to USC when the Dodgers signed him and he was always a Dodger fan. He has a better chance to play more regularly in SF but one would think the Dodgers would have offered $6M as well. I was worried that nobody would offer him a contract.

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      1. Didn’t realize he grew up a Dodger fan.

        If AF was going to offer him $6MM he probably would have done it by now. I’m guessing he had his agent check in one last time before taking the Giants offer.

        I saw a story online that said Brandon Crawford texted him yesterday, asking him where he was planning to play this year. Joc told him he might have to wind up in Japan. Voila! An offer from the Giants.

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  10. Morosi, and Rosenthal say it’s getting close, Rosenthal says they are around 6/160. Hate the thought of six years, but I think we all knew that’s what it would take. Plus if they pull this off, it’s insurance against if they have a hard time resigning Belly next season. They may have to make a decision between T Turner, and Bellinger for next season. I heard today that TT would be willing to negotiate an extension, even if they need to negotiate during the season. Nice to know he would like to stay.

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  11. Good for Joc he would have made a good platoon with pollock, and a little DH, but he should get more ab’s in Suck Francisco than he would have gotten here in Blue Heaven.

    Glad Suzuki didn’t sign with the Giants, I read they were one of the early favorites. I think Seiya is going to be a real good player here, I’m not saying perennial all star, but a good solid player.

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