Trea Turner Tried Convincing Carlos Rodón To Sign With Dodgers

Trea Turner and Carlos Rodón may be enemies as part of the rivalry between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants, but that couldn’t be further from the truth off the field.

The two are close friends, which dates back to their time playing collegiately at North Carolina State. They were even roommates before they were both selected in the 2014 MLB Draft, with Rodón going third overall to the Chicago White Sox and the San Diego Padres selecting Turner 13th overall before trading him to the Washington Nationals.

Both have developed into stars at their respective positions and changed teams within the past year. The Dodgers acquired Turner prior to the trade deadline last season, while the Giants signed Rodón as a free agent this past offseason.

Before Rodón signed a two-year contract in San Francisco, Turner was pitching him on the idea of playing together once again by possibly joining L.A., according to Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic:

He wanted Rodón in Los Angeles with him, too. “I tried,” Turner said.

Rodón has had multiple injury issues throughout his career since debuting in 2015, but he finally put all his talent together in 2021 and had a breakout season with a 2.37 ERA and 2.65 FIP in 132.2 innings.

However, the White Sox decided not to retain him and he became a free agent.

In the second half of the season, Rodón saw his velocity drop and he was less effective than he was in the first half. His FIP was nearly a run higher in the second half, so although he was still a quality pitcher, it was a concerning trend.

As a free agent, Rodón was looking to re-establish his value and prove himself as a capable ace, and Turner was using the Dodgers’ development system as a way to try to bring the left-hander to the club:

Turner tried selling him on the fit with a franchise that would go on to add not one, but two perennial All-Stars in Freddie Freeman and Craig Kimbrel after Rodón signed elsewhere. He advocated for the organization’s “unbelievable” pitching development and game planning — “It would’ve been another thing to add to his tool belt,” Turner said.

The Giants, led by former Dodgers general manager Farhan Zaidi, also have a strong development system that is helping pitchers breakout and re-establish themselves.

So far this season, Rodón has continued to prove himself as an ace. In 29 innings, he owns a 1.55 ERA and 1.40 FIP while his average fastball velocity is up to 96.4 mph after averaging 95.4 last season.

As for Turner, he is hitting .261/.309/.375 with a 100 wRC+ and just one home run, which is a step back from his career production, but the expectation is he will get back on track soon.

Turner is due to become a free agent after the season, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Rodón ends up working to recruit the 28-year-old shortstop to the Bay Area.

Dodgers did not make Turner a contract offer

Both leading up to and since signing a one-year deal to avoid arbitration, Turner said he was open to discussing a contract extension with the Dodgers. However, the team never got to the point of making an offer to Turner before the 2022 regular season began.

After signing Freddie Freeman to a six-year, $162 million contract, it was all but assured the Dodgers wouldn’t move to ink Turner to a long-term deal as well.

But by seemingly putting off contract talks until after the season, the Dodgers could find themselves in a precarious position if Turner is enticed by a more lucrative offer in free agency.

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