|Dodger G.M. Ned Colletti is still in "Buyers" mode despite Dodgers 4th place standing|
Thursday, July 14, 2011
The Mets are Selling, Why Isn't Colletti?
Yesterday the New York Mets dealt their closer Francisco Rodriguez to the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for two players to be named later. The Mets agreed to to pay slightly less than half of the remaining $4.9 million owed on his contract and are responsible for $3.5 million of the buyout.
Yes, it was a salary dump and yes, the Mets are shipping him away so that they don’t have to pony up for that ludicrous incentive clause in his contract that pays him $17.5 million next year if he finishes a certain amount of games. I don’t fault the Mets for doing that, I commend them. It was the smart thing to do. They aren’t catching the Phils or Braves and they are doing the wise thing for the future of their franchise. I wish I could say the same thing with the Dodgers.
The Mets, at 46-45, are 7 and a half games out of first place in the N.L. East and there is plenty of talk of them unloading Carlos Beltran and/or Jose Reyes. The Dodgers, at 41-51 are 11 games behind San Francisco and behind both Arizona and Colorado sitting in 4th place. Yet Ned Colletti said today that the Dodgers will be buyers at the trade deadline. Are you kidding me?
Colletti is quoted by Ken Gurnick on the Dodgers website:
“...we need to execute better in the second half and gain the confidence that we can, and we’ll be in buying mode at the [trade] deadline, as usual. I’m still confident we can make a run, pick up a game and be in a decent spot. We still have a load of games in the division.”
So there you have it. It doesn’t matter that the Dodgers are buried one game out of the cellar. It doesn’t matter that the starting staff is really only 3 deep, followed by an unproven rookie that is throwing more innings than he ever has, and a faltering veteran on his way to leading the league in HRs allowed. It doesn’t matter that the Dodgers have serious question marks at catcher, first base, second base, third base, left field, shortstop, and the bullpen closer role. They’re buyers.
Be very worried folks. I’ll be expecting a deal for a Podsenik type player or a Dotel type reliever to come in exchange for prospects again. What few realize is that what the Dodgers got in the Dotel deal is essentially Anthony Jackson, currently in Rancho Cucamonga sent back from AA Chattanooga The Dodgers dealt James McDonald and Andrew Lambo for Dotel, who then was shuttled off to Colorado for a player to be named - Anthony Jackson. Hmm, Lambo/Mcdonald for Anthony Jackson, a speedy outfielder with no pop. A very astute move, don’t you think?
Don’t even get me started on the Podsednik deal with KC. The results are similar in nature, except the Dodgers have nothing to show for that trade now.
My question is this. How many games do the Dodgers need to be out of first for Colletti to consider them to be out of contention?
What I would do if I were G.M. is to get value for players while they still have value: Notably Jamey Carroll and Rafael Furcal. Both perfect fits in Cincinnati who are in need of a shortstop. The Reds have some prospects that may fill Dodger future needs. One being a fine switch hitting catcher by the name of Yesmani Grandal, playing currently in AA ball. He’s a 22 year old Cuban ballplayer with a combined OBP of around .375 at High A Bakersfield/AA Caroline this year. 11 HRS and 51 RBI. Good plate discipline, the only flaw noted so far is that of throwing out base stealers. Something that Yeager could work with him on.
That’s the first move I’d make if I was sitting in the GM chair. There are others, but what’s the point.? Ned is buying, not selling. I said it several weeks ago and I’ll say it again. The future of this franchise will only be saved if is if the Dodegrs go on a July tail spin that even ned can’t deny that they will come out of.
Colletti sees the writing on the wall. McCourt is probably out and that doesn’t bode well for his future with the club. Let’s hope he does the dignified thing and attempts to leave the franchise intact with a future for development rather than leaving the cupboard bare in last ditch efforts to save his job.