While Los Angeles Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman has worked to assemble a roster capable of winning the franchise’s first World Series since 1988, there’s been an equal amount of importance placed on creating a positive culture.
That ultimately proved key in the Dodgers pulling off a coup by re-signing Kenley Jansen and Justin Turner, who joined Rich Hill in returning. “As much as you want to go out and explore, test the market, and I had this conversation with Kenley, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side,” Turner said from Dodger Stadium on Wednesday.
“With other organizations, no matter how good they make it seem that it will be for you, you don’t necessarily know what you’re getting yourself into. With the Dodgers, obviously being here the last three years, I knew exactly what was here. I love the staff, Dave Roberts, his guys and what they stand for. I love being a Dodger, love being in the community. I really wanted to continue those relationships, and I have some unfinished business.”
Turner’s sentiment was echoed by Jansen, who on multiple occasions during the 2016 season said the total amount of a new contract would drive his free-agency decision. In reality, Jansen took less money to re-sign with the Dodgers.
“I want to win. That’s the first thing. What this organization means to me, the opportunities they’ve provided me, it means so much (to re-sign),” Jansen said.
“It ain’t about the money all the time, man. In talking to JT, Scott Van Slyke and Yasiel (Puig), it isn’t about the money sometimes. It’s about where you want to be, your family, and making the right decision for them.”
Jansen and Turner were leaders, on and off the field, for a team that finished two wins shy of reaching the World Series. Both are confident the Dodgers are capable of taking a step forward in 2017, and have a desire to be part of ending the drought in Los Angeles.
“From the bottom of my heart, I want to win a championship here,” Jansen said. “Winning a championship with the Dodgers would mean so much to me. That’s my dream.”