In an effort to reduce payroll to get below the luxury tax threshold, the Los Angeles Dodgers completed a trade earlier this offseason with the Atlanta Braves, sending Adrian Gonzalez, Brandon McCarthy, Scott Kazmir and Charlie Culberson to Atlanta for a familiar face in Matt Kemp.
While the Dodgers acquired Kemp’s remaining two-year contract, their payroll was reduced by more than $20 million for the 2018 season as they unloaded Gonzalez, McCarthy and Kazmir’s expiring contracts that were all north of $12 million.
Gonzalez, who had a rough season with the Dodgers in 2017, still has the desire to play in 2018, although it won’t be with the Braves as they granted his request of a release, making him a free agent.
In a recent interview, Gonzalez’s dad David said that he is drawing interest from four different teams in free agency and that a return to the Dodgers was possible if no other team took a chance on him.
It appears Gonzalez may not need the Dodgers to take another chance on him though, as according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today he is in serious discussions to sign with the New York Mets:
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) January 14, 2018
If the Mets were to sign Gonzalez it would likely be for a minimum salary, as he is still owed around $22 million from the Braves for the upcoming season.
Before Gonzalez’s injury-plagued 2017 season, he was as reliable as anyone in the league both with the bat and glove as he hit at least 18 home runs and drove in at least 90 runs in his first four full seasons with the Dodgers.
The five-time All-Star has won four Gold Gloves and two Silver Slugger awards in his career and would provide the Mets some insurance and a mentorship for their promising young prospect, Dominic Smith, at first base.