It is unclear what Los Angeles Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman is up to at the Major League Baseball Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, but he is certainly up to something.
The Dodgers have reportedly been in discussions to acquire Cleveland Indians ace Corey Kluber, but as usual, it looks like Friedman is attempting to get creative.
Los Angeles currently has a surplus of both outfielders and starting pitchers that they can use in deals, and if they are able to do that then that would also help clear some payroll.
The latest rumors have the Dodgers discussing a trade with the Cincinnati Reds for right fielder Yasiel Puig, who is eligible for arbitration and in the final year of his contract.
If the Dodgers make that trade, it may be a part of a bigger deal as Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic is reporting that they could be willing to take on Homer Bailey’s contract as a way of acquiring prospects that could be sent to Cleveland:
In one variation of this deal, #Dodgers would take back Homer Bailey from #Reds and his remaining $28M commitment as a way of buying prospects. Bailey’s CBT number (average annual salary in multi-year deal) is $17.5M. Deal complex, still in discussion, not close. https://t.co/y3yVs5Rpsf
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 12, 2018
Bailey still has one year and $23 million remaining on his contract with a $5 million buyout at the end of the 2019 season, although as Rosenthal alluded to, his CBT number that goes towards the luxury tax is lower.
The 32-year-old was one of the worst pitchers in all of baseball in 2018, going 1-14 with a 6.09 ERA, 5.55 ERA and 1.64 WHIP in 20 starts. He struck out 75 and walked 33 in 106.1 innings.
If the Dodgers were to acquire Bailey, they could potentially reinvent him as a reliever as his velocity may play better out of the bullpen.
It seems like the Dodgers are discussing a variety of possibilities and no deal may be close to happening at this time though.