Despite having an MLB-caliber shortstop on their roster in Corey Seager, the Los Angeles Dodgers did not hesitate to expand their blockbuster trade with the Washington Nationals to include Trea Turner along with Max Scherzer.
Turner effectively was insurance for Seager, who was in the final year of his contract. Of the Dodgers who reached free agency this offseason, Seager widely was viewed as the most difficult to re-sign.
He went on to join the Texas Rangers on a 10-year, $325 million contract that the Dodgers reportedly were not close to matching despite interest in extending their partnership.
L.A. could pursue one of the other top free-agent shortstops, but they likely will look to replace Seager with Turner. He of course played shortstop for most of his career with the Nationals before moving over to second base after the trade.
Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman left open the possibility of Turner switching back to his original position next season during a recent appearance on AM 570 L.A. Sports, but noted the 28-year-old had not approached the team about such a change before Seager left:
“We have not had that conversation. Obviously we asked a lot of him when we traded for him, and I can’t say enough about him and his willingness to do that. It showed how much he wanted to win. He is a shortstop, and a really good one. We have not had that conversation, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if that’s what he wants to do. We haven’t gotten there yet and we have a lot of heavy lifting to do between now and then to figure out what gives us the best position player group as we head into 2022.”
If the Dodgers opt to keep Turner at second base for some reason, Gavin Lux could be another potential option at shortstop for the 2022 season. Chris Taylor also appeared at the position this year, but he presumably will remain in a utility role.
L.A. also has been linked to Carlos Correa, though signing him would be a surprise considering tension and frustration with the 2017 Houston Astros.
Turner earned MVP votes
Walker Buehler believed Turner was deserving of National League MVP consideration, and although he lobbied, it didn’t generate much traction.
Turner was not named among the finalists and finished in fifth place.
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