To the chagrin of many, Los Angeles Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman resisted trading the organization’s top prospects over the past few years for a midseason upgrade. With the non-waiver trade deadline just over two weeks away, the spotlight is again on Friedman and the Dodgers.
Perennial contenders prior to and during Friedman’s tenure, the Dodgers nonetheless find themselves in a bit of a different position in 2017. They tore through the first half of the season and resume their schedule with a 61-29 record that’s best in the Majors.
That’s not to say there aren’t areas that could be upgraded, however. One being in bullpen, specifically in the form of a left-handed reliever. Los Angeles has been linked to Baltimore Orioles closer Zach Britton, among others.
What potentially lies ahead remains to be seen, and it comes with the caveat of Friedman claiming the Dodgers aren’t as aggressive as they have been in years prior, according to Andy McCullough of the L.A. Times:
“In a lot of ways, we’re a lot more selective than we’ve been in the past,” Friedman said. “Part of that speaks to our organizational talent level, at this point, as well as the depth behind it. But also, the culture that has been created among this group of players — it’s something that’s special. I can’t really see us messing with that, short of doing something that makes an incredible amount of sense to us.”
Even with Friedman’s assertion that the Dodgers are more deliberate this year, it’s not in his nature to stand pat. Although the club may ultimately not acquire a high-profile pitcher or right-handed bat, history suggests Friedman will at minimum tinker with the roster.
Last year, the Dodgers acquired Jesse Chavez, Josh Fields, Rich Hill and Josh Reddick prior to the non-waiver deadline, and Carlos Ruiz was added in August.
The 2017 team is one pace for 110 wins this season, which would be a franchise record, besting the 105 wins the 1953 Brooklyn team amassed.