Rendon or bust?
Well, the Dodgers didn’t get Cole. They now have to figure out a way to take a 106 win regular-season team, that took the eventual World Champions to extra innings in the deciding 5th game, and did so despite one of the worst postseason managing decisions in LAD history to win a few extra games in October.
Oh such a task
How do you take a team that has a projected infield of Max Muncy, Gavin Lux, Corey Seager, Justin Turner and make that infield better?
How do you take a team that has a projected outfield of Alex Verdugo / MVP Bellinger / Joc Pederson_AJ Pollock and make that outfield better?
How do you take a team that has a projected bench of Chris Taylor, Hernandez, Beaty, Barnes and make it better?
How do you take a rotation of Buehler / Kershaw / Kenta / Urias / May / Stripling / Gonsolin and make it better?
How do you take a bullpen of Jansen / Kelly / Baez / Ferguson / Kolarek and make it better?
Seems pretty clear to me that of the above options, the best deal the Dodgers have going right now is the infield. They could really use another starter to replace Ryu, at least two bullpen pieces and I don’t think anything else.
Anthony Rendon is a free agent, and Justin Turner has said he’d switch positions, so improving the infield is what Dodger Twitter wants us to do.
Yesterday I said the Dodgers needed to be “all-in” on Gerrit Cole.
Well, they weren’t.
Now, it’s time to shift the attention towards someone else, and really be “all-in” on Anthony Rendon.
— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) December 11, 2019
Announce Rendon today, @Dodgers. Please.
— Dustin Nosler (@DustinNosler) December 11, 2019
The moving chess pieces are easy in the beginning. You simply insert Rendon at 3rd base, move Turner to 1st base. The next step isn’t so easy.
- Do you put the Minor League Player of the Year in Gavin Lux back in AAA and move Muncy to 2nd base for 2020? That doesn’t seem ideal. And while in AAA is he learning how to become an outfielder?
- Do you trade Corey Seager and move Lux to Shortstop? Maybe, but you’d be hard-pressed to convince me that an infield of Turner/Muncy/Lux/Rendon is better than an infield of Muncy/Lux/Seager/Rendon.
- Do you trade Joc Pederson and install Gavin Lux as your everyday Left-Fielder? I can live with that. Not every infielder can become an elite outfielder, but maybe Lux can, and he can go back to being a SS either in 2021 or 2022.
As you might realize by now I’m not really a fan of any of those options but when you look at the possible infield timeline:
2020 1st Muncy / 2nd Lux / SS Seager / 3rd Turner
2021 1st Muncy / ??? / SS Lux / 3rd Seager
2022 1st Muncy / ??? /SS Lux / ???
You can see why adding Rendon now makes perfect sense even if it causes all sorts of Dodger dominos to fall in the current season because when the timeline changes to this:
2020 1st Turner / 2nd Muncy / SS Seager / 3rd Rendon
2021 1st Muncy / 2nd Lux / SS Seager / 3rd Rendon
2022 1st Muncy / ??? / SS Lux / 3rd Rendon
You only have one hole to fill and that hole is only if you don’t resign Corey Seager.
So yeah, I’m all in on Anthony Rendon even though the bullpen and rotation still need some work.