As we crawl into the final 10 days before the 2022 MLB trade deadline, things remain untypically quiet, aside from all the chatter surrounding Juan Soto and whether the Nationals will strike a deal with another club before August 2.
The Dodgers have been linked to Cincinnati right-hander Louis Castillo for weeks now, although we really haven’t heard any new reports about any progress. As a matter of fact, the Dodgers have been linked to any pitcher who is rumored to be part of the trading block, including former Dodger flamethrower Frankie Montas.
From a fan’s perspective, the primary thing we’re thinking about right now is how much the Dodgers want to sacrifice to improve their chances during the 2022 stretch run. Obviously, the team has the resources to deal for just about any superstar who becomes available. However, if the organization continues to dump its top prospects on a regular basis, the farm system becomes less valuable, which is the first step in the wrong direction when you’re trying to maintain a primarily self-sustaining franchise.
Nevertheless, we often tend to panic as fans when the team deals away top prospects. Andrew Friedman is extremely careful when trading away his blue-chippers, as we really haven’t seen too many mistakes, aside from shipping out Yordan Alvarez to the Astros for some righty reliver named Josh Fields back in 2016.
That’s not to say someone like Keibert Ruiz, Josiah Gray or Jeter Downs won’t eventually emerge as a superstar. Yet, as it stands now, it seems like all three of these former Top 5 prospects could end up as middle-of-the-road players.
There’s a whole slew of potential trade chips on the market right now, from Soto to Castillo to Montas to Tyler Mahle to David Robertson. However, until we hear some specific reports about any progress being made, it’s nearly impossible to tell what some of these teams are looking for in return.
Not too many clubs are keen these days receiving an MLB-ready player who might hit .250 with 15 homers for the rest of their career as part of a trade package for their top-notch talent. Instead, they’d much rather take a risk on a prospect or two with potential, much like the Astros did with Alvarez.
One thing we’ve been discussing at great length is some of the big names the Dodgers expect back from injury, which could act as a similar boost to a trade. Some of the players who could return sooner rather than later include Brusdar Graterol, Blake Treinen and Dustin May.
The problem is that it’s unwise to speculate that some of these players will return at 100%, especially in the cases of Treinen and May. What’s more, it’s impossible to predict potential injuries to other key players between now and the end of the season.
From the current landscape, it looks like the Dodgers outclass pretty much everyone in the National League, even with the handful of injuries they have. The big question is whether they have enough steam to make it to the end or if they need a few reinforcements from the outside.