An Early Free Agent Wishlist for Dodgers

While there isn’t any baseball until late February when pitchers and catchers report to spring training, it doesn’t mean baseball takes a break, as many activities continue year-round. Teams have begun to hire new managers, and soon teams will look to make free-agent offseason splashes. While the winter meetings may not be the same as previous years, baseball fans across the world will be refreshing their Twitter feed to hear the latest rumors as the offseason progresses.

The 2020 World Series Champion Dodgers have seven free agents in Pedro Baez, Kike Hernandez, Jake McGee, Joc Pederson, Blake Treinen, Justin Turner, and Alex Wood, all of whom played pivotal roles throughout the regular season and postseason. Whether they re-sign or not, their contributions to the Dodgers will always be remembered.

Here, in this wishlist, I will target players who I think the Dodgers have a good chance of signing or re-signing due to a number of different reasons.

Liam Hendriks—Right-handed Reliever, Oakland Athletics

Liam Hendriks is probably the number one reliever on the market this offseason. The Australian closer won the 2020 Mariano Rivera American League Reliever of the Year Award. Hendriks is 31 years old and was an All-Star in 2019. He tallied 14 saves in 2020, which was second in the majors. He also posted a 1.78 ERA and 37 strikeouts and a 0.671 WHIP. Hendriks has shown he can go multiple innings, as he recorded a three-inning save in the postseason against the Astros.

There will be many suitors for the services of Hendriks. The Dodgers have three relievers on the free-agent market like I previously mentioned. Whether they’re able to re-sign any of them is uncertain, if they are unable, they could go after Hendriks. With no clear closer, and Kenley Jansen having seemingly lost his efectiveness, the Dodgers could pursue Hendriks. This season, Treinen, Jansen, Joe Kelly, Brusdar Graterol, and Julio Urias all saved games for the Dodgers. The ultimate wish here would be for the Dodgers to sign Hendriks while also retaining Treinen, although that could be quite pricey.

Justin Turner—Third Baseman, Los Angeles Dodgers

Yes I know, Turner isn’t necessarily a new addition to the team, as he’s been with the Blue Crew for a while. It is hard to envision Turner leaving the Dodgers at this point, and it only seems right he retires a Dodger. Turner will be 36 in late November and is nearing the end of his career. The Dodgers definitely got an all-time franchise steal when they signed him to a minor league Contract back in 2014.

This postseason Turner became the all-time Dodger leader in playoff hits passing Steve Garvey. Turner hit .307 in 2020 along with four homers and 23 RBI. His defense at third base also was crucial, showing up with a double play in Game 7 of the NLCS among his many web gems this year. He showed leadership in the clubhouse and was a crucial part of this Dodger team. In all likelihood, Turner may re-sign with the Dodgers on a short-term deal.

Marcus Stroman—Right-Handed Starting Pitcher, New York Mets

This last one came down to two pitchers, Trevor Bauer and Marcus Stroman. Bauer certainly had a great year, but I feel there will be a lot of teams after his services, and he’ll get a lengthy contract, probably outside of the range the Dodgers would commit. I believe Stroman is more of a viable option for the Dodgers. Stroman, who’s 29, didn’t pitch in the 2020 season for the Mets. He’s struggled with injuries the past couple of seasons, but he was an All-Star his last full season in the majors in 2019.

Many fans may remember the great pitching display he put on during the World Baseball Classic back in 2017, earning him MVP honors for the tournament. In the 2019 campaign, he posted a 3.22 ERA and 159 strikeouts over 184 ⅓ innings pitched. Due to his history with injuries, teams may be reluctant to sign Stroman, giving the Dodgers a better chance. Starting pitching has been one of the Dodgers strong suits in recent years, and if the Dodgers don’t sign any starting pitching, there are certainly options within the organization. They definitely have the arms to repeat as champions, but it wouldn’t hurt to add.

Dodgers Are 2020 World Series Champions

(Associated Press photo)

Enough about 1988! For the first time in 32 years, the Dodgers have won the World Series. The seventh title in franchise history. The most tumultuous year of the century in which many didn’t know what was in store, with baseball as an afterthought. No one knew if a Major League season would even take place. But baseball eventually got up and dusted itself off, and in the end, one team was standing—the Los Angeles Dodgers.

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Dodgers Opinions: Thoughts on What is Learned from NLDS Game 2

It wasn’t neat, it wasn’t necessarily tidy. But when all was said and done, the Dodgers got the win, and that’s all that matters.

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Dodgers News and Notes Ahead of NLDS

Today is the last off day for the Los Angeles Dodgers before they begin what could be five straight games in a row, as they take on the San Diego Padres in the NLDS.

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Dodgers Win First Game Against Brewers, Send Kershaw to Mound for Game 2

(Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

The Dodgers did what they needed to do against the Milwaukee Brewers Wednesday night, scoring more runs than them to win the first game of the Wild Card round. But it wasn’t without some issues.

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Regular Season Success Doesn’t Mean Postseason Success, but Past Playoff Failures Might

(Harry How/Getty Images)

And just like that, here we are. The Los Angeles Dodgers are once again Champions of the NL West, and poised for another World Series run. And once again, Dodger fans know that what happened in the regular season doesn’t mean much if they still don’t get that elusive ring.

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Last Regular Season Series for Dodgers, Other Notes

Here we are entering the final regular-season series of the year against the Angels. The Dodgers have clinched “home field advantage” throughout the National League playoffs. This season, home field doesn’t directly come to play, but the fact that the Dodgers have a better road record should bode well for the team looking ahead, regardless.

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Walker Buehler Returns to Dodgers’ Starting Rotation, Health Critical to World Series Chances

(Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

With just four games left in the regular season, the Dodgers will finally have their full starting rotation back, just in time for the playoffs.

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Dodgers Look to Use Last Two Series as Tuneups for Postseason

(Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images North America)

Even though it was a much shortened season, it still feels like we’ve reached the end of the season so quickly. Today is the last off day for the Dodgers during the regular season, with the playoffs starting next Wednesday.

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Dodgers’ Magic Number Down to Five as Final Week of Regular Season Approaches

After the Dodgers lead dwindled down to 1.5 games at the beginning of the week, it is now back up to a full four games. The magic number for an eighth consecutive National League West Division title is down to five with only nine games to play. On Wednesday, the Dodgers became the first team to clinch a playoff berth. The season has breezed by as we all expected a 60-game season to be. As we enter the final week of the season, it would have been exciting to watch this Dodger team over a full 162-game season. But, at least the front office secured Mookie Betts for the next dozen years, which I’d believe 99 percent of Dodger fans would be content with.

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