In what has been a slow-moving offseason, many of the top free agents remain unsigned with less than a month until the scheduled start of 2021 Spring Training. However, one came off the board last week when DJ LeMahieu agreed to a six-year contract to stay with the New York Yankees.
The Los Angeles Dodgers were one of several teams that reportedly pursued LeMahieu, whose versatility and right-handed bat appealed to the organization. The 32-year-old was said to be seeking a five-year contract in excess of $100 million, but settled for $90 million.
Though a reunion took some time to come to fruition, many executives around the league expected LeMahieu to re-sign with the Yankees all along given both sides’ desire to hammer out a new contract.
Despite this, the Dodgers reportedly remained in the LeMahieu sweepstakes until the very end, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic:
The Dodgers were involved in the bidding for LeMahieu, and their failure to sign him seemingly would point to a reunion with free-agent third baseman Justin Turner.
With LeMahieu no longer an option for the Dodgers, it would seemingly improve the odds of Justin Turner returning. L.A.’s preferred choice is said to be bringing him back, but the two sides have not been able to agree on the length of a new contract.
Besides the Dodgers, the only other known suitor for Turner has been the Toronto Blue. The Washington Nationals were mentioned as a potential option, but it’s not clear if that’s led to any talks with Turner.
Marcus Semien reportedly option to replace Turner
Should Turner sign elsewhere, the Dodgers could look to fill his void with Oakland Athletics free agent Marcus Semien. The 30-year-old is coming off a disappointing 2020 season but is only two years removed from an MVP-caliber 2019 campaign.
If Semien is signed to a multi-year contract, he could play third base this season and then possibly move back to shortstop the following year should Corey Seager depart in free agency.
There is also the possibility of the Dodgers re-signing Turner and still bringing in Semien. In this scenario, he could become an option at second base or fill a utility role.
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