Dodgers Free Agency Rumors: Top Shortstop Priority Over Aaron Judge

The Los Angeles Dodgers have been mentioned early on as being one of the many teams who are interested in courting New York Yankees free agent Aaron Judge, but with Trea Turner hitting the open market as well, their focus could be addressing that need.

Following the disappointment of a 111-win season that ended in a National League Division Series loss to the San Diego Padres, the Dodgers and president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman now have to contend with other clubs vying for top players in free agency.

With Judge coming off of one of the greatest offensive seasons in MLB history, it’s difficult to not want to make a bid at power-hitting outfielder who just blasted 62 home runs. Judge posted a wRC+ of 207 during the 2022 regular season, which ranks fifth all-time for a single season dating back to 1972.

He should be on the top of every team’s list if they can afford to add a contract that will be one of the highest in baseball history, but the Dodgers may instead be more focused on an elite shortstop, per John Heyman of the New York Post:

However, the Dodgers are more likely to target a big-time shortstop.

Turner’s possible exodus would leave the Dodgers searching to replace a middle-of-the-order bat at a premier position. The former World Series champion posted an impressive .298/.343/.466 batting during the 2022 season and is poised for a lucrative contract.

The free-agent shortstop class doesn’t stop at Turner. It’s likely to include Xander Bogaerts, who is expected to decline a $20 million player option with the Boston Red Sox, and Dansby Swanson of the Atlanta Braves is on track to become a free agent as well.

The Dodgers have been linked to another name who hasn’t officially opted out of his current contract with the Minnesota Twins in Carlos Correa.

The Dodgers have expressed interest in re-signing Turner, but with a few different options at multiple positions, Friedman will have a tough task in prioritizing where to allocate the franchise’s resources.

Dodgers again mentioned in Carlos Correa rumors

After the 2021 season, Correa was potentially the top free agent aside from Corey Seager, who signed long-term with the Texas Rangers. Correa wound up receiving a three-year, $105.3 million contract from the Twins that included a series of player options.

Correa hit .291/.366/.467 with 24 doubles, 22 home runs, and 64 RBI over 163 games this year, and appears to have no reservations over the 2017 season in which the Houston Astros cheated their way to a World Series title over the Dodgers.

That past aside, Correa is arguably the top shortstop in the class. Once he likely opts out to become a free agent, the Dodgers would benefit from his postseason experience and fill a gap left in their middle infield to go alongside Freddie Freeman, Mookie Betts and an already-talented roster.

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