Dodgers Team News

Dodgers Rumors: LA Reportedly ‘High on List’ for Yoshinobu Yamamoto This Offseason

Several starting pitching options are set to hit free agency this winter and the Dodgers are sure to be in the mix to improve their rotation.

LA’s battered pitching staff ultimately ended their season earlier than anyone anticipated after a dismal NLDS showing against Arizona.

One of the best arms available to LA and other teams will be Yoshinobu Yamamoto who comes from Japan as the marquee name on the international market this winter. Bob Nightengale of USA Today reported that Yamamoto is “high on the Dodgers’ wish list.”

Japanese right-hander Yoshinobu Yamamoto, 25, also is high on the Dodgers’ wish list, along with the New York Yankees and Mets.

via Bob Nightengale, USA Today

Yamamoto dominated in the NPB this season over 171 innings of work to the tune of a 1.71 ERA and 176 strikeouts.

The 2023 season capped an insane run from the Orix Buffalo as in each of the two previous seasons, the starter tossed over 190 innings with over 200 strikeouts and a sub-2 ERA.

Still just 25 years old, Yamamoto differs from several other Japanese starters from years past as names such as Kenta Maeda and Kodai Senga were in their late 20s when they crossed over to MLB.

Less milage on his arm only makes him more attractive to several teams who could use a frontline starter to aid their rotations.

The Dodgers should be chief among these suitors after their lackluster rotation finally caught up to them at the worst possible time.

No NLDS starter for LA went more than 2.2 innings after Clayton Kershaw, Bobby Miller and Lance Lynn all failed to reach this mark.

Such poor showings from each man doomed LA from the start as Dave Roberts’ hitting core failed to come from behind in any of the three losses they suffered.

Rotation help is very much needed in LA and Andrew Friedman would be wise to dip into the international pool once again for such a fix.

Photo Credit: Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports

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  1. Maybe he would like to be on the same team as Ohtani, if Ohtani signs with the Dodgers. Sign him either way as the Dodgers can use high-quality starting pitchers in 2024 (and beyond). Getting an equivalent pitcher by trade (Burnes, Glasnow) means giving up talent. Free agents only cost money (and the opportunity cost to spend that money elsewhere). In 2024 right now there are: Buehler, Bobby Miller, Pepiot, Sheehan, Grove, Yarbrough. Maybe Kershaw. So another high-quality starter is needed. Yes, in 2025 Gonsolin and Dustin May come back, but Buehler will be a free agent. Kershaw likely won’t be pitching in 2025. Maybe Ohtani pitches for 2-3 years starting in 2025. Yes, by then, maybe one or more of Grove, Sheehan, Gavin Stone, Kyle Hurt, Lanon Knack, Nick Frasso, or someone else will be pitching 175 innings. With Ohtani, they need a 6 man rotation, he ptiches on a 6 man schedule.

  2. I agree, Yamamoto would be a good fit. Eventually you have to trade some prospects, like our catchers and pitchers because there is not room for all of them and they help you get what you need.
    I for one would rather always trade to fill my needs. It’s a lot harder to find a match, signing a free agent is so much easier but you have to either play your prospects or trade them.
    If Ohtani,Buehler or May come back and pitch well that would be great and I hope they do, but after 2 arm surgeries each I wouldn’t count on them much.
    As for Ohtani, I think we can spend our money better elsewhere, like reliable starting pitching, 3B, a rh outfielder and more pitching.

  3. Here’s where I’m at: sign Blake Snell (need a lefty!), and Ohtani. Yamamoto could be added as well, but now you have a crowded rotation with Snell, Buehler, Miller, Sheehan, Pepiot, and hopefully Kershaw. If Kershaw retires, then yes, Yamamoto makes a lot of sense. Stone needs more polishing at AAA, and Grove looks best as a long reliever. Frasso is 2025.

    Bring back Heyward. It’s hard to overstate how much he has meant in the clubhouse and to the younger guys. With DeLuca ready to take LF, Heyward will be able to mentor him too. Peralta could be another option, albeit in a bench role. Once Busch shows he can hit MLB pitching, he’s our 3B. Muncy becomes trade bait at that point.

    Freeman, Betts, Lux, and Muncy/Busch in the infield, and DeLuca, Outman and Heyward in the OF. Smith at C, but Barnes needs to be replaced. Since its a backup role, bring Feducia up from AAA. Much better hitter. Hernandez, Rojas, and Peralta off the bench.

    Bullpen: Closer :Hurt, setup: Graterol, long-left: Ferguson, long-right: Grove, others: Philips, Vesia, Yarborough, and 1-2 others.

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