In a market filled with premium shortstops, the Dodgers have made their intentions clear that they want to lock up an elite shortstop long-term. For years, rumors swirled that LA was interested in trading for Francisco Lindor before he was ultimately dealt to the Mets, where he eventually signed a 10-year extension worth $341M. Then this past season, LA traded away their top two prospects, C Keibert Ruiz and RHP Josiah Gray, for ace starter Max Scherzer and elite shortstop Trea Turner.
With Corey Seager handling shortstop duties last season, the 2021 NL batting champion was forced into playing second base during his first few months with his new club. After establishing himself as one of the game’s premier defensive shortstops over the past few seasons, Turner struggled at times playing second base and has made it known that he wants to revert to his natural position as a full-time shortstop moving forward.
Trea Turner has one more year of club control before he hits the free agent market following the 2022 season, but the Dodgers could potentially try to get him to agree to an extension as soon as the lockout ends or at any point next season. Ideally, the club would get a deal done before Opening Day, just like they did with Mookie Betts before the 2020 season.
LA’s marquee offseason acquisition was entering the final year of club control and hadn’t played a single regular season game with the Dodgers before agreeing to the largest contract in franchise history at 12-years $365M. If the Dodgers can’t strike a deal with Turner or fear he could walk after next season, the team could look elsewhere for a franchise shortstop.
Trevor Story to Dodgers? Story Listed as Fit for LA, Should Dodgers Consider Signing Story?
The Dodgers made an aggressive attempt to retain Corey Seager, offering him nearly $300M before signing with the Texas Rangers on a 10-year $325M deal. Shortly after Seager signed with Texas, the MLB rumor mill started buzzing with speculation after MLB insider Jon Heyman mentioned the Dodgers as a team ‘you can’t rule out for Carlos Correa.’ If LA feels that Turner won’t sign an extension or has designs to test the market and potentially sign elsewhere, the Dodgers could pivot to making a run at free-agent shortstop Trevor Story.
Story, 29, had a down year in 2021 where he slashed .251/.329/.471 with 24 home runs, a 100 wRC+, and a 3.5 fWAR, but turned it on in the second half of the season where he slashed .253/.337/.506, hit 13 home runs with a 111 wRC+ in 65 games played. Story’s power numbers have been trending in the wrong direction over the past few seasons, but save for Manny Machado who has long since shifted over to third base, Story has led all shortstops with 158 home runs since 2016.
Further, since 2016, Story is second among shortstops in slugging percentage at .523 and fWAR at 21.6. MLB Trade Rumors projects that Story will ultimately sign for 5-years, $126M, so he would potentially be far less expensive than some of the other premium shortstops and certainly less than the kind of money that Trea Turner would command.
In a perfect world, the Dodgers would get a deal done with Trea Turner as soon as possible, but if whatever reason they can’t and they don’t feel that Gavin Lux is the long-term solution at shortstop, Trevor Story could be an option worth considering. We discuss if the Dodgers could consider adding Trevor to their storied franchise and if he would be a good fit for LA. Plus, thoughts on why Trevor Story performed below his standards last season.
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