After a slow start to their offseason, the Los Angeles Dodgers have been busy adding to their roster recently.
The team has so far officially signed Clayton Kershaw, Shelby Miller, Noah Syndergaard, along with Jason Heyward and Adam Kolarek on Minor League deals while trading for J.P. Feyersein and Yonny Hernández. Meanwhile, the Dodgers remain in the market for a center fielder and would ideally like to add a left-handed hitter.
Heyward gives the Dodgers a left-handed option in center, but he profiles more as a depth for the corner outfield.
L.A. did however sign a true center fielder in Bradley Zimmer to a Minor League contract, according to Fabian Ardaya of the Athletic:
Dodgers are signing outfielder Bradley Zimmer to a minor league deal, source tells The Athletic.
The 30-year-old center fielder has big league time with Cleveland, Toronto and Philadelphia.
— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) December 18, 2022
Zimmer, who was previously one of MLB’s top prospects, has spent parts of six seasons at the Major League level with five of those coming with the Cleveland Guardians. This past season he split time between the Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies.
The 30-year-old is a plus-defender in center field, but has not hit much over the course of his career. In 372 games, Zimmer has batted .213/.298/.333 with 21 home runs, 91 RBI, 121 runs scored, 42 stolen bases and a 73 wRC+.
In 2022, the left-handed batter was one of the worst hitters in Major League Baseball. He appeared in 109 games and hit just .124/.207/.229 in 117 plate appearances. His 26 wRC+ was the 5th worst among 469 hitters with at least 100 plate appearances.
Zimmer’s best trait is his speed that ranked him in the top 7% of players last season with 29.2 feet per second. It was a step down from his 2021 mark of 29.4 feet per second that placed him in the top 3% of players.
Defensively, Zimmer has a strong arm with a max speed of 94.3 mph in 2022, and he also produced four outs above average as a center fielder, increasing his career total to 14. He has played all three outfield spots in his career.
Zimmer will most likely open the season with Triple-A Oklahoma City and serve as organizational depth during the season, but it would not be unlikely to see him have at least one stint with the Dodgers.
Dodgers signing J.D. Martinez
After losing Trea Turner to the Philadelphia Phillies and with Justin Turner still on the free agent market, the Dodgers have been in-need of a productive hitter. They have now reportedly fixed that issue by signing J.D. Martinez to a one-year contract.
Martinez experienced some regression this past season but earned a second consecutive All-Star Game selection by hitting .274/.341/.448 with 43 doubles, 16 home runs and a 119 wRC+.
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