Despite all the trades the Los Angeles Dodgers have made since president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman took over in December 2014, the team continues to field one of the most talented farm systems year in and year out.
L.A. is able to move prospects for Major League players without it hurting their long-term outlook because they scout, draft and develop players better than any other team in baseball, and they are arguably the best at it in any sport.
Without each one working at a high level, they wouldn’t be successful. The combination put the Dodgers in strong position to acquire Max Scherzer and Trea Turner from the Washington Nationals at the trade deadline this season.
“One last thing I’d like to point out is a major hat tip to our pro scouting department, our international scouting department, our amateur scouting department, our player development group,” Friedman said after completing the blockbuster trade.
“The number of trades we’ve made in recent years and the young talent we’ve traded away, some of the young players we’ve acquired that have helped us do different things, shouldn’t go without notice of what an unbelievable job those departments do.”
Before the deadline, Friedman noted the Dodgers still had talent to pull from in order to improve the Major League roster. He then used his top two prospects, Josiah Gray and Keibert Ruiz, to acquire a future Hall of Famer Max Scherzer and All-Star shortstop.
For nearly every other team, a trade like that would likely end up setting them back a few years as they mortgage their future to try to win now.
For the Dodgers, even after trading their two top prospects, the farm is still stocked with talent and there is a trust they will add more talent to replace them.
“For us to still have the farm system depth we do, to have the current team and future outlook is solely because of those guys in our baseball ops. group and analytics group. I just can’t say enough about those groups and how interconnected everyone is. It’s put us in position to be able to do something like this in a way that wasn’t totally reckless,” Friedman added.
Ruiz will likely be a great player, but the Dodgers have another top prospect at catcher in Diego Cartaya right behind him. Gray should be a really good pitcher, but Bobby Miller is already looking like their next top pitching prospect.
The Dodgers are one of the only teams in sports who can go all-in to win during the present without trading their future. Yes, their willingness to spend and have high payrolls helps, but doling out large contracts can only take you so far.
Without a farm system producing young stars and top prospects they can trade, a lot of the players in L.A. right now wouldn’t be on the club.
Roberts puts Buehler in Cy Young conversation
Walker Buehler has been one of the top starting pitchers in baseball this season with a 2.16 ERA and 3.13 FIP in 22 starts, but New York Mets ace Jabob Degrom is the runaway favorite for the National League Cy Young Award so far despite dealing with multiple injuries.
“You can’t take anything away from Jacob and what he does. But I will say just the ability to post and what Walker has done this year in totality, shouldn’t go unnoticed,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of where Buehler should stand in the NL Cy Young Award race.
Buehler has been consistently making his starts all season and he has been great every time out. He was also named the NL Pitcher of the Month for July.
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