I am not sure anyone would have guessed the Los Angeles Dodgers would be leading the entire league in wins, let alone be halfway to 110 wins at this point. The Dodgers are a quality, deep, and loaded team. However, there are some things to raise an eyebrow about.
First base. What is Dave Roberts going to do at the position? Joc Pederson is being tried and tested there, learning on the fly, but so far looks exactly like you thought he would – an outfielder, never having played first base, trying to play first base. With David Freese hitting the IL for a couple weeks, or more, with a hamstring injury, he is left with minimal options if the plan keeps Cody Bellinger from coming in.
The bullpen. The biggest question mark, or at least cause for considering an upgrade, on the entire roster. Even though the last couple weeks, the bullpen has turned in solid performances, there have also been games like the one Dylan Floro had on Monday night against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Joe Kelly hasn’t been the steady force the team hoped he would be, and Kenley Jansen has done well, yet still has had his moments.
When you look at this team, with the exception of the current version of Cody Bellinger, it doesn’t have that one superstar. It’s a collection of grind you out, quality players who together, create the best team in baseball. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts with this team. The next step in continuing that accomplishment is finding the players who will be available, at for the right price.
The management has clearly set the precedence of protecting and keeping their prospects at all costs. Even with the Manny Machado trade last year, they felt they kept all the pieces they were not comfortable letting go. This year will be a little different. The trade deadline is earlier, so the difference between buyers and sellers will be much smaller, and there will be higher premiums on controllable talent, as well as a pure rental.
The front office will do something by the deadline, that’s almost assured. Just what that is, or who it is for, will remain to be seen.
What isn’t very debatable, is that players will need to be added to this roster, through trades, if the Dodgers plan on finishing off the second half of the season the way they have completed the first.
Feature Photo: Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG