Los Angeles Dodgers – MLB Trade Rumors 2019-08-18T02:10:41Z https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/feed/atom WordPress Ty Bradley <![CDATA[Julio Urias Suspended 20 Games]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=171487 2019-08-17T20:48:23Z 2019-08-17T20:21:12Z Dodgers lefty Julio Urias has been suspended 20 games under MLB’s Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Child Abuse policy, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports. Per Jorge Castillo of the LA Times, the suspension includes the five games Urias served while on administrative leave. Urias will not appeal the decision and will be eligible for postseason play.

The 22-year-old Urias was arrested May 13 in Los Angeles after eyewitnesses and video reports showed the hurler “shoving a female companion to the ground.” He was placed on administrative leave the following day, during which time he missed the five aforementioned contests.

The former top prospect has enjoyed a solid 2019 campaign – mostly in a long relief role – after returning late last season from a gruesome shoulder injury that sidelined him for nearly 15 months. In 67 2/3 IP this season, the lefty’s posted a 2.53 ERA/3.59 FIP with an 8.91 K/9 against 3.06 walks per nine.

The Dodgers’ public statement on the matter reads as follows:

“While we are disappointed in what occurred and support the decision by the Commissioner’s Office, we are also encouraged that Julio has taken responsibility for his actions and believe he will take the necessary steps to learn from this incident.”

Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Chris Taylor Begins Rehab Assignment]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=171304 2019-08-16T02:47:29Z 2019-08-16T02:47:29Z Injured Dodgers utilityman Chris Taylor began a rehab assignment at the Single-A level Thursday, Ken Gurnick of MLB.com relays. There’s no word on how long it’ll take Taylor to return to the majors.

The Dodgers have been without the versatile Taylor since July 14, when he fractured his left forearm. The hope then was Taylor would only sit out four to six weeks, but he obviously won’t make it back to the Dodgers at the low end of that timeline. Unsurprisingly, the depth- and talent-laden Dodgers have continued to thrive in Taylor’s absence. They owned a 62-33 record after the game in which he incurred his injury and now sit 81-42, which is easily the best record in the National League and places them a ridiculous 19 games up in the NL West.

Los Angeles’ roster figures to become even formidable with the return of Taylor, who overcame a slow start to post respectable numbers prior to his injury. While the 28-year-old’s overall production has fallen short of the figures he recorded from 2017-18, he has still slashed .261/.334/.452 (105 wRC+) with eight home runs and seven stolen bases.

Defensively, Taylor has logged double-digit appearances at both middle infield positions and in left field. LA has been in good hands in those spots without Taylor, however, as Max Muncy has manned the keystone and Corey Seager has handled short. As for the corner outfield, although Alex Verdugo’s also on the IL, the Dodgers have largely deployed NL MVP candidate Cody Bellinger, Joc Pederson and Matt Beaty to successful results of late.

Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Latest On Rich Hill]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=171288 2019-08-16T02:35:36Z 2019-08-16T02:13:50Z
  • Rich Hill and Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman haven’t closed the door on the possibility of Hill starting for the team in the postseason, Jorge Castillo of the Los Angeles Times writes, assuming Hill’s rehab from a flexor tendon strain proceeds as expected.  Hill played a 50-toss game of catch from 120 feet today, and the next steps in his rehab include throwing off a mound next week and then tossing four bullpen sessions.  From there, Hill “will make what amounts to rehab appearances in the majors. He would start with an inning or two, and increase the workload with each outing, one inning at a time, like in spring training.”  This plan could get Hill ready to go for October, though if length is still an issue, the Dodgers could also use one of several other arms in combination with Hill in a piggyback situation.
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    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Dodgers To Use Rich Hill As Reliever]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170880 2019-08-12T04:59:50Z 2019-08-12T04:59:50Z There was already speculation that Rich Hill would be used as a reliever when he returns from the injured list, and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts confirmed it today, telling reporters (including The Athletic’s Pedro Moura) that there isn’t enough time left in the season for Hill to properly prepare for a starter’s workload.  A flexor tendon strain has sidelined Hill since June 20, and while he is making progress in his rehab, it seems like he is still some weeks away from getting back on a big league mound.

    George Miller <![CDATA[Dodgers Activate Hyun-Jin Ryu, Option Casey Sadler]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170829 2019-08-11T18:31:17Z 2019-08-11T17:15:48Z The Dodgers have activated injured starter Hyun-Jin Ryu from the injured list, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com. To clear a roster spot for Ryu, right-handed pitcher Casey Sadler has been optioned to Triple-A. Ryu will start Sunday’s series finale versus the Diamondbacks.

    Ryu landed on the IL in early August owing to a minor neck issue. He last pitched on July 31, but he’ll return to the Dodgers’ rotation after the minimum ten days out of commission. Ryu has emerged as one of the National League’s premier starters, tossing 135 2/3 innings while maintaining a minuscule 1.53 ERA, placing him among the frontrunners for the NL Cy Young Award. After signing the qualifying offer last offseason, Ryu will have the chance to enter free agency in the winter following a career year.

    Sadler’s demotion, meanwhile, can’t be attributed to a lack of results. Since joining the Dodgers in an early-July trade with the Rays, the 29-year-old has surrendered just one run in 12 1/3 innings of work. However, his peripheral numbers paint a slightly less rosy picture, as he’s struck out just 5.8 batters per nine innings. Still, Sadler has no doubt shown that he is deserving of a spot on a Major League roster, but the state of Dodgers’ deep pitching staff will squeeze him out of the mix for the time being.

    Gurnick would add in a subsequent Tweet that Dodgers manager Dave Roberts would like to get a look at other relief options as the postseason approaches. The Dodgers’ expansive lead in the division should afford them greater flexibility to give opportunities to young pitchers who hope to claim a spot on the postseason roster. In addition to young standouts Dustin May and Tony Gonsolin, pitchers like Caleb Ferguson and JT Chargois look like fringe candidates to crack the October roster, and Sadler’s demotion should give Roberts a chance to figure out exactly what he has in Ferguson and Chargois.

    Dylan A. Chase <![CDATA[Jansen Receives Vote Of Confidence From Manager Roberts]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170774 2019-08-11T03:09:01Z 2019-08-11T03:02:51Z Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen has received the dreaded “vote of confidence” from skipper Dave Roberts, as detailed in a report from the Orange County Register’s Bill Plunkett. Following a blown save in Friday’s game against Arizona, Jansen has five blown saves in 2019–matching his combined total from 2017 and 2018. Despite the big righty’s career-high 3.83 ERA entering play Saturday, Roberts seemed generally nonplussed at the prospect of a Jansen demotion. “Do I have any concerns? No,” Roberts told Plunkett. “He’s a guy that I know for us to win 11 games in October, we need him. I know he’ll get there.”

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Dodgers Acquire Jose Lobaton From Mariners]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170663 2019-08-09T19:33:54Z 2019-08-09T19:20:42Z The Dodgers and Mariners have announced a deal in which veteran backstop Jose Lobaton will head to the Los Angeles organization. Cash considerations will head the other way in the swap.

    Lobaton, 34, had been playing with the top Seattle affiliate on a minors deal. That’s why he was able to be traded after the July 31st trade deadline.

    It’s doubtful that the Dodgers anticipate utilizing Lobaton at the MLB level. He hasn’t been a passable offensive performer in the majors since 2016. In parts of nine seasons in the majors, the switch-hitter carries a .215/.293/.319 slash.

    But with prospect Keibert Ruiz going down with an injury, there was a need for a gap-filler at Triple-A. And the Dodgers undoubtedly wish to be sure they’re covered with sufficient organizational depth in the event of an unanticipated run of injuries.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Dodgers Place Alex Verdugo On Injured List]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170238 2019-08-06T23:50:07Z 2019-08-06T23:50:07Z The Dodgers announced Tuesday that outfielder Alex Verdugo has been placed on the 10-day injured list due to a right oblique strain. Corner infielder Edwin Rios is up from Triple-A Oklahoma City to give the club another bat in his place. Los Angeles also optioned right-hander Tony Gonsolin to Triple-A Oklahoma City and recalled lefty Caleb Ferguson to add a fresh arm. The Dodgers have the NL West all but wrapped up in early August, so the Dodgers have every reason to proceed with caution regarding Verdugo’s recovery. The longtime prospect has turned in a very strong .294/.342/.475 batting line with a dozen home runs, 22 doubles, two triples and four steals through 377 plate appearances in his first full big league season. Oblique injuries can often take a month to heal, though manager Dave Roberts kept things vague regarding Verdugo, simply telling reporters he’ll need 10 days or more to recover (Twitter link via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com).

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Latest On Rich Hill, Chris Taylor]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170160 2019-08-06T05:13:24Z 2019-08-06T05:13:24Z Dodgers southpaw Rich Hill has made just one appearance in relief since he revived his career in 2015, but it’s possible he’ll finish the season in bullpen when he comes off the injured list, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register relays. Hill has been out since June 20 with a flexor tendon strain, and while his recovery’s going well, he may not have enough time to build up his arm strength for a return to the Dodgers’ rotation. “Ideally, starting is the priority,” said Hill, but he’s just eager to “get back to pitching” in some capacity. Meanwhile, utilityman Chris Taylor – who fractured his left forearm July 14 – remains hopeful he’ll come back at the low end of the four- to six-week period the Dodgers said he would miss. Taylor will first have to embark on a rehab assignment, though, and he hasn’t progressed to that point yet.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Dodgers Plan To Start Julio Urias In 2020]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=170145 2019-08-06T02:47:19Z 2019-08-06T02:46:43Z Dodgers left-hander Julio Urias has spent the majority of the season working out of their bullpen, but the club expects to change his role in 2020, manager Dave Roberts told Alden Gonzalez of ESPN.com and other reporters Monday.

    “We project him to be a starter for us next year,” Roberts said, “and many years to come.”

    Urias entered the majors as a hyped 19-year-old prospect in 2016. He started in 15 of 18 appearances that season, but because the Dodgers were monitoring his workload as a rookie, he only totaled 77 innings. Urias nonetheless thrived over that span, pitching to a 3.39 ERA/3.17 FIP with 9.82 K/9 against 3.62 BB/9. The hope then was that Urias would offer similar or better production over a larger number of innings going forward, but he instead underwent a major procedure – anterior capsule surgery on his left shoulder – in June 2017 and combined for just 27 1/3 innings between that year and last season.

    Set to turn 23 next week, Urias has returned from his injury (and a May domestic violence arrest, for which charges weren’t filed) to serve as one of the strongest members of a somewhat shaky bullpen. He’s hands down the top lefty option in a relief corps that has dealt with significant injuries to veteran southpaws Scott Alexander (our since June 7 with forearm inflammation) and now-Cardinal Tony Cingrani (out all season because of shoulder issues).  Through 37 1/3 innings as a reliever, Urias has notched a 1.93 ERA/3.59 FIP with 8.44 K/9, 3.13 BB/9 and a 44.6 percent groundball rate. Adding to his value, Urias has given the Dodgers more than one inning in most of his appearances.

    As the NL-leading Dodgers take another shot at a World Series this year, they’ll consider deploying Urias as one of their main setup men, per Roberts. Beyond that, with Hyun-Jin Ryu and Rich Hill scheduled to become free agents over the winter, there will be room for Urias in the Dodgers’ rotation.

    Dylan A. Chase <![CDATA[Stripling Set For Rehab Outing Tuesday]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=169877 2019-08-04T06:05:54Z 2019-08-04T05:54:54Z
  • Dodgers righty Ross Stripling was also seen on the mend today, as a “max effort” bullpen session didn’t seem to produce any pain in his injured neck and biceps, according to Orange County Register writer Bill Plunkett (Twitter link). Manager Dave Roberts later told Plunkett that Stripling would make an appearance with the club’s affiliate in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, with the team still uncertain of his post-activation role on the roster (link). Of course, the Texas A&M product has shown comfort in his career thus far in both bullpen and starting roles: since his debut in 2016, Stripling has posted a 3.24 ERA in 125 career relief innings, contrasted with a respectable 3.70 ERA in 248 starting frames.
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Dodgers Place Hyun-Jin Ryu On 10-Day IL]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=169695 2019-08-02T21:43:42Z 2019-08-02T21:36:13Z The Dodgers announced that they’ve placed southpaw Hyun-Jin Ryu on the 10-day injured list with neck soreness. His anticipated timeline to return isn’t yet known.

    In other moves, the L.A. org announced the already reported arrival of exciting pitching prospect Dustin May while recalling fellow righty Tony Gonsolin. Reliever Dylan Floro was optioned out to create roster space. Southpaw Scott Alexander moves to the 60-day injured list to make 40-man space for May.

    Ryu, 32, has been on an unbelievable run of success since accepting a qualifying offer to remain with the Dodgers. In 21 starts, he has run up 135 2/3 innings of 1.53 ERA pitching while maintaining 7.8 K/9 against 1.1 BB/9 along with a 51.5% groundball rate.

    It’s unlikely the veteran lefty will be able to keep up quite that level of output the rest of the way, but he seems to be in top form at an important time for a Dodgers club that just placed a big bet on its existing pitching options at the trade deadline. Given his lengthy injury history and limited accumulation of innings in recent campaigns, it’s not surprising to see Ryu hit the shelf. There’s no indication of the seriousness of the injury, but it’s reasonably likely the Los Angeles organization was as concerned with finding Ryu some down time as it was worried about this particular malady.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Dodgers Notes: Pederson, Gyorko]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=169625 2019-08-02T06:21:56Z 2019-08-02T06:21:56Z
  • The Dodgers’ Joc Pederson first base experiment is over for at least the time being, manager Dave Roberts told Jorge Castillo of the Los Angeles Times and other reporters Thursday. The outfielder has picked up 20 appearances at first this year, and during that 149-inning span, Pederson has made six errors and posted minus-3 Defensive Runs Saved. Right fielder Cody Bellinger will now shift to first against right-handed starters, while Pederson will take left, A.J. Pollock center and Alex Verdugo right in those situations. Max Muncy could handle first on occasion versus lefties, according to Roberts (Tyler White manned the position versus Padres southpaw Joey Lucchesi on Thursday).
  • More from Castillo, who writes that just-acquired Dodgers infielder Jedd Gyorko will begin a rehab assignment at the Double-A level Saturday. Gyorko, whom the Dodgers picked up in a trade with the Cardinals on deadline day, has been out since June 8 because of back and wrist issues. He’s eligible to come off the 60-day injured list next week, though he’ll first need to amass around 40 to 50 minor league at-bats, per Roberts.
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Friedman: Dodgers Missed On Top Targets Despite Aggressive Approach]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=169488 2019-08-01T14:10:44Z 2019-08-01T14:10:44Z Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman defended his organization’s approach to the trade deadline, as J.P. Hoornstra of the Orange County Register reports. There was some consternation as the team came away with only Jedd Gyorko and Adam Kolarek yesterday, but Friedman says he’s satisfied the front office played its hand correctly.

    “I think our position was to be aggressive,” said Friedman. “As far as process, conversations and how aggressive we were, we feel really good about what we can control,” he added.

    With a generally exemplary roster, there weren’t many areas for the Dodgers to upgrade, though the bullpen was certainly one. Perhaps it didn’t help that many of the top relievers were held by the rival Giants. A late injury to Ken Giles may have skewed the top of the market.

    Most of all, the Dodgers seemed to be focused (quite understandably) on a few top assets — in particular, so far as was known publicly, ace Pirates closer Felipe Vazquez. Whether they’d ultimately line up wasn’t so much a matter of broad market considerations as individual negotiations.

    It simply didn’t happen on Vazquez, with the Bucs reportedly demanding top Dodgers prospect Gavin Lux. Pittsburgh GM Neal Huntington says the team was simply “looking for what we felt was an appropriate return for one of the best relievers in baseball,” as Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic reports (subscription link). That characterization of Vazquez — an apt one, it’s worth noting, even before considering his exceptionally valuable contract situation — offers some insight as to why the deal wasn’t consummated.

    Friedman did not address Vazquez specifically. But he hinted that the club was willing to go beyond its valuations to land such a talent — just not as far as would’ve been necessary.

    “If you expect to win a deal from a value standpoint in July, you’re not going to make deals,” he said. “We made plenty of offers that were definitely underwater from a value standpoint but felt good about making because of the team that we have.”

    The subtext here is a tough one for some to accept: it was only worth so much future value to improve in the immediate term. Every team has had to reckon with such considerations, even before the analytical explosion. The narrative of the Dodgers as prospect-clutching misers is not really a fair one. This club went big for Yu Darvish and Manny Machado in successive deadlines. There really wasn’t much need for the team to seek marginal improvements to this particular roster, given the monster lead it has already built in the NL West.

    Still, it’s tough for Dodgers fans not to wish that this team had somehow managed to install a premium new relief arm at the back of the pen. That’s especially true given how agonizingly close the team has come to a championship in recent campaigns, and how good it is already. The L.A. front office is confident it handled the trade market in a responsible manner, but it’s also aware that one never knows how the picture will look until the games are played. “A year or two from now, that could end up being a really good thing,” Friedman said of the way the deadline played out. “We’re not sure.”

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Dodgers To Promote Dustin May]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=169440 2019-08-01T01:14:43Z 2019-08-01T00:40:48Z The Dodgers will call up prized right-handed pitching prospect Dustin May in time for Friday’s game against the Padres, ESPN.com’s Jeff Passan reports (Twitter link).

    The 21-year-old May only made his Triple-A debut on June 30, but he’ll now get his first taste of Major League competition after posting a 2.30 ERA over 27 1/3 innings for Triple-A Oklahoma City.  Over his entire minor league career, May has a 3.50 ERA, 4.43 K/BB rate, and 8.8 K/9 rate in 403 2/3 innings.

    A third-round pick in the 2016 draft, May emerged on multiple preseason prospect ranking lists, and his solid performance this year has only elevated his stock.  Fangraphs currently ranks May as the eighth-best prospect in baseball, while ESPN.com’s Keith Law (13th), Baseball America (26th) and MLB.com (35th) were only somewhat less bullish.

    May boasts a three-pitch arsenal that includes a two-seam fastball that can touch 97mph, a cutter that reaches the low-90s, and an impressive curveball.  On the 20-80 scouting scale, MLB.com ranks all three pitches with at least a 60-grade, topped off with a 65-grade fastball.  May throws a lot of strikes, and doesn’t allow many walks or home runs.  While his 27 1/3 innings in Triple-A is a small sample size, May didn’t allow a single homer during his brief stint in the very hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League.

    As one might expect, May’s potential has attracted a lot of attention from potential trade partners, though the Dodgers resisted all offers involving the young righty.  May was reportedly heavily targeted by the Orioles last year when Baltimore and Los Angeles were in talks about Manny Machado, though the Dodgers were able to retain May while still landing Machado for a package of five other prospects.  More recently, the Pirates had interest in May while discussing Felipe Vazquez deals with L.A.

    With May still in the fold, he’ll now become a weapon for the Dodgers as they pursue another trip to the World Series.  While the rotation hasn’t been quite as much of a revolving door for the Dodgers this season as in past years, May will slide into the fifth spot in the rotation with Rich Hill and Ross Stripling both sidelined with injuries.  Julio Urias most recently served as the fifth starter, though it seems as though he’ll return to his previous role in the bullpen.  Given how flexible the Dodgers are with pitcher usage, May will likely see some time as a reliever himself later in the season.