TODAY: The Dodgers are also talking with the Indians about Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar, Jon Morosi of FOX Sports reports on Twitter. Those two names have long been in play, of course, but it’s notable that Los Angeles is back in discussions after seeing several other moves fall through in recent weeks.
Cleveland is not in any rush to deal its starters, as the front office has continued to emphasize in public statements and ESPN.com’s Buster Olney explained earlier today. But the club still seems entirely willing to talk about its power arms, and certainly seems amenable to trading them in the right scenario.
YESTERDAY, 6:15pm: ESPN’s Jayson Stark tweets that there’s a good deal of buzz in the industry that the Dodgers could look to a trade with the Rays in their quest for rotation upgrades. Odorizzi’s name is generating more speculation than most, he notes, although Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times spoke to several sources and got the sense that there’s nothing imminent between the two teams at this time (Twitter link).
1:02pm: The Dodgers are in talks with the Rays regarding Jake Odorizzi, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). The Dodgers’ three-year, $45MM agreement with Hisashi Iwakuma could be up in the air and it’s possible that the Dodgers are weighing their alternatives.
Odorizzi, 26 in March, has pitched well for the Rays in each of the past two seasons, though he missed some time in 2015 due to an oblique strain and was thus limited to 169 1/3 innings. Odorizzi doesn’t throw particularly hard, averaging about 91 mph with his fastball, but he’s shown an ability to pick up strikeouts at an above-average clip nonetheless. Over his past 337 1/3 innings (2014-15), Odorizzi has a 3.74 ERA with 8.6 K/9 against 2.8 BB/9. A pronounced fly-ball pitcher, Odorizzi does have a rather low 33.5 percent ground-ball rate in that time.
Earlier this month, it was reported that the Rays were in extension talks with the right-hander. Odorizzi’s agent referred to the proposal as a “very nice initial offer,” which suggested that while there was a good starting point, nothing was imminent on that front either. Odorizzi is not yet arbitration eligible and won’t be until next offseason. He’s controllable for another four years, so it stands to reason that the Rays would like a significant haul to part with him. Of course, after Wednesday’s three-way deal, the Dodgers are sitting pretty in terms of prospects, so they can afford to make a strong offer to the Rays.