Although the Los Angeles Dodgers continue to be connected to starting pitchers Yu Darvish and Sonny Gray, the message remains addressing the bullpen prior to Monday’s non-waiver deadline is the primary focus.
Interest from the Dodgers in relief pitchers has primarily focused on Zach Britton, Brad Hand and Justin Wilson. As of late Sunday night, the Detroit Tigers appeared to reach an agreement to trade Alex Avila and Wilson to the Chicago Cubs.
The Cubs, like the Dodgers and Houston Astros, were among the multiple contenders scouring the market for a left-handed reliever.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, it appears Los Angeles is primarily focused on Britton as opposed to Hand and other lefty relief pitchers who may be available:
The Dodgers, meanwhile, seem more focused on Orioles closer Zach Britton and represent an alternative for Gray if the Athletics fail to complete a trade with the Yankees.
Britton is easily the most accomplished of the aforementioned relief pitchers, but he’s dogged by injury concerns. The 29-year-old twice was placed on the disabled list this season due to a left forearm strain.
It wasn’t until Sunday that Britton appeared in back-to-back games since suffering the injury in April. Though even with that, he only faced three batters.
On the season Britton has converted all eight of his save opportunities, while pitching to a 3.32 ERA and 1.74 WHIP. He’s yet to allow a home run in 19 innings pitched.
Britton is under team control for next season via salary arbitration, which may explain some of the Dodgers’ strong interest. That being said, some consider the Astros the favorite to trade for the Baltimore Orioles’ closer.