Thursday, July 30, 2009

Git-R-Done Dodgers!

The Dodgers may still have the best record in baseball (tied with the Yanks at 62-39), but are they now the third best team in the National League? The Cards acquired Mark DeRosa, Julio Lugo, and Matt Holliday to give Albert Pujols some much needed offensive support. Yesterday, the Phillies went out and grabbed last year’s AL Cy Young winner from the Indians without giving up wither Kyle Drabek or JA Happ. The Dodgers must respond. The question is, how will they?

From my view, they need another starter and another strong arm in the back of the pen if they want to make a serious run at this thing. The Lee/Martinez rumors were intriguing, but not at the expense of dealing Billingsley or Kershaw. They need to add, not exchange.

St. Louis has Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, and Joel Pineiro.
Philadelphia has Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, and Joe Blanton / JA Happ.
LA has Chad Billingsley, Clayton Kershaw, and Randy Wolf.

Philly’s offense is every bit as potent as LA’s, and they added a front of the rotation starter. The Cardinals already have solid pitching, and they’re lineup is now much more formidable.

Word today from FOX Sports has the Dodgers in the running for Roy Halladay:
“Toronto officials have given Colletti a number of alternatives: smaller prospect packages headlined by left-hander Clayton Kershaw or right-hander Chad Billingsley, but not both; or a five-prospect package that doesn’t include either Kershaw or Billingsley.

The LA Times says:
“The Blue Jays have told the Dodgers they can get Halladay without trading anyone off their major league roster, for five or six prospects. The Dodgers have said no, arguing that would gut their minor league system.

Yeah, that makes sense. Last year was the first time the Dodgers were World Series relevant since 1988. Adding Roy Halladay guarantees the Dodgers nothing, but I’d really like their chances of holding off both the Cardinals and Phillies with Doc Halladay at the top of the rotation.
Follow that up with by trading for Baltimore's close, George Sherrill.

FOX Sports reports that:
“The Orioles are looking for a third baseman in return for Sherrill, sources said, and they are believed to prefer Josh Bell to Blake DeWitt.”

I’d work on Halladay first, obviously, and if Bell or DeWitt is still around, work something out with Baltimore. The Dodgers bullpen has been a strength, but Joe Torre has never been shy about overusing a reliever.

Closer Jonathan Broxton is still among the game’s top closers, but he needs help. Ronald Belisario should return mid-August to slot in front of Ramon Troncoso, but they still need more. Guillermo Mota has been hot lately, but how long will that last. I can’t stand the punk, and it would be just like him to crumble when needed most. Lefty Brent Leach is good for one batter a game, and Hong-Chih Kuo just returned to action for the first time since the end of April. Cory Wade and Will Ohman have been unreliable and injured, and rookie James McDonald is just unreliable.

I’m not for gutting the farm, but these guys are “prospects” for a reason. Look up “prospect” in the dictionary, and you’ll see the words chance, expectation, and potential. I’ll give up a few chances, an expectation, and some potential for one of, if not the best starter in baseball.

Remember how CC Sabathia fared in his NL stint with the Brewers?
17 starts
7 complete games
3 shutouts
11-2 record

Think Halladay wouldn’t improve upon his already dominant 11-4 record and 2.68 ERA with a move to the NL? Again, there are no guarantees with Halladay, but with the Dodgers’ World Series window being as wide open as it’s been in 20 years, now is the time to capitalize. Or they can just sit back, keep their prospects, and watch the Cardinals and Phillies slug it out with the AL for all the marbles.

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