The morning after winning the World Series, the Los Angeles Dodgers saw seven players become free agents. The group featured plenty of key contributors in Pedro Baez, Kiké Hernandez, Blake Treinen and Justin Turner, among others.
By most accounts, Turner was expected to remain with the Dodgers. The same could not be said for Hernandez, Joc Pederson and Alex Wood. Hernandez wound up joining the Boston Red Sox on a two-year contract, and Wood signed a one-year deal with the San Francisco Giants.
More recently Pederson signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Cubs. That left Turner as the final Dodgers free agent who had yet to land a new deal.
After being linked to the Milwaukee Brewers, Toronto Blue Jays and other teams, Turner has agreed to remain with the Dodgers.
According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, Turner’s contract is for two years and at least $30 million:
Third baseman Justin Turner’s deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers is for two years and more than $30 million, sources tell ESPN.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 14, 2021
At the start of the offseason Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman identified the bullpen and a right-handed bat as areas of focus. He expressed a desire to re-sign some of the club’s free agents, but also encouraged them to explore the market.
Manager Dave Roberts was more straightforward, stating on multiple occasions he had Turner atop his wish list. “I think what Justin does on the field, in the clubhouse, in the community, he’s one of the Dodger greats,” Roberts said in December.
“He really is. It’s been six years he’s been with the Dodgers, and he’s in that elite company. His body of work is really special and unique. But it’s a two-way deal here: it’s the Dodgers and Justin and his family. For me, selfishly, I’ll take him for as long as I can have him.”
Turner hit .302/.382/.503 with 177 doubles, 116 home runs and 406 RBI in 796 games over the past seven seasons with the team. He was an All-Star in 2017 and is the Dodgers’ all-time postseason leader in games played (72), hits (79), home runs (12), RBI (40) and total bases (135).
The Dodgers re-signing Turner comes on the heels of the team adding Trevor Bauer on a record-setting contract, further positioning themselves well to defend their World Series title.
The Dodgers will need to make a corresponding move on the 40-man roster before making their reported agreement with Turner official.
Turner ranked among top third basemen for 2021
While there have been external concerns over Turner’s defensive play at third base, he was ranked among the top 10 players at his position for the 2021 season.
Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in our shows, and more!