When the Guggenheim Baseball Management group purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers, they installed Stan Kasten as president and CEO of the franchise. He arrived with a rich history and long line of success in professional sports, namely with the Atlanta Braves and Washington Nationals.
Kasten eventually hired Andrew Friedman as president of baseball operations, and the Dodgers have enjoyed previously unseen levels of success. Of course, a World Series title has continued to evade them.
After winning a franchise-record 106 games but suffering a first-round exit in the postseason, the Dodgers were expected to be a key factor for the top free agents. After all, the 2019 season was another year in which they remained below the luxury tax threshold.
Ultimately they aggressively pursued Gerrit Cole, who joined the New York Yankees for a record contract of nine years and $324 million. During a recent interview on MLB Network Radio, Kasten noted the Dodgers weren’t overly concerned with grabbing headlines during the offseason:
“We always are looking to make our team better for this year and the future. I hate to be vague but that’s just how we wake up every morning thinking about things. Maybe it’s a free agent, maybe it’s a trade, maybe it’s neither. Just winning the offseason, winning the Winter Meetings, that’s not a factor. Making the team better is a factor. Making it better in a way that keeps us better in the long haul with all the many considerations go into that kind of judgement, that’s what we focus on.”
The Dodgers’ lone addition thus far in the offseason was the signing of Blake Treinen to a one-year contract. Stephen Strasburg never seemed to have much intention of leaving the Washington Nationals, and Anthony Rendon wasn’t interested in joining the Dodgers.
L.A.’s lack of activity at the Winter Meetings and in free agency was magnified when Hyun-Jin Ryu signed a four-year, $80 million contract with the Toronto Blue Jays.
Kasten’s assertion that the Dodgers take a measured approach to roster changes and that they aren’t concerned with public perception has held true for multiple years. However, the front office has come under heightened scrutiny this winter as the Dodgers’ World Series drought carries on.
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