Yesterday I posted an article saying that the Dodgers needed to be all-in on Gerrit Cole. Well, in case you might have missed it, he signed a record-breaking nine-year deal worth $324 million with the New York Yankees last night.
From what I saw on Twitter, Dodgers fans were divided on that move. Half were happy the Dodgers didn’t fork over nearly a third of a billion dollars, but the other half were disappointed that their team failed to sign a marquee name yet again. Personally, I’m going to hold off on how I feel about it until the Dodgers’ offer is released, or if it ever gets released. If they offered a deal similar but it just wasn’t enough, well, I can live with that. But, if it comes out the years or money wasn’t even in range of what Cole was asking, I’ll be a tad bit upset.
Anyways, Cole is a Yankee, and it’s time to shift our focus towards another player. And no, it’s not Madison Bumgarner, who Ken Rosenthal reported the Dodgers are now interested in signing. That’s an article for itself.
With Cole, LA’s supposed “top target” off the market, it’s time for the Dodgers to go “all-in” on Anthony Rendon. Dodgers fans are far too familiar with Washington’s third baseman. He hit .412 in the NLDS against LA, and hit a pretty crucial homer in game 5. And well, that’s all I’ll say.
He was incredible in the postseason, and just as good in the regular season too. You’ve probably already seen his numbers across the board, but here’s a refresher. He hit .319/.412/.598/1.010 to go along with 34 homers and a league-leading 126 RBI. Finishing third in MVP voting, Rendon has established himself as not only one of the best third basemen in the league, but one of the best overall players in the league as well.
And the Dodgers absolutely need to do whatever it takes to sign him.
Do the Dodgers have a glaring need at third base? No. They have Justin Turner, though he’s come out and said he’s willing to move to first base should the Dodgers acquire someone. There will be a bit of musical chairs going on in the infield, but they can easily make it work. You slot Turner in at first, move Muncy to second, keep Seager (or Francisco Lindor) at shortstop. Yes, Gavin Lux still exists, but he might not be ready to be an every day starter quite yet. Plus, if these rumors are true, Lux can potentially serve as an outfielder next season.
In my article yesterday, I talked about how it’s not every day the best player at their position becomes available. Well, LA has a chance to pick up the best. Sure, you can decide between him and Nolan Arenado, but I think Rendon was the better third baseman last year.
Rendon has proven he’s one of the best hitters in the game, and more importantly, he’s shown he can hit in October, something a lot of Dodgers hitters lack. I know you can put the blame on a lot of people as to why the Dodgers were eliminated in the first round this past season, but this stat right here pretty much sums up why they could desperately use Rendon.
#Dodgers have hit .203 as a team, including .197 with runners in scoring position, and struck out nearly 10 times per game in the series that ended their postseasons the past 4 years (NLCS v Cubs, WS v Astros and Red Sox, NLDS v Nationals). https://t.co/p7XMe14tIL— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) December 9, 2019
In the biggest moments, the LA bats have failed to deliver. Insert Rendon, and hopefully things can change.
Rendon supposedly turned down a seven-year contract worth $210 million near the end of the 2019 season. After his incredible October showing, that price is likely going to go up. He could ask for a deal very similar to what Arenado received last season, eight years for $260 million.
Same as Cole, Rendon is only 29 years old, and right in the prime of his career. If he asks for an eight-year deal, the Dodgers need to do it. If he asks for anything less than that, even better. For years, the Dodgers have been setting themselves to get under the luxury tax, and they’re in prime position to go after a big-time player. Even if they go over, that shouldn’t stop them from continuing to spend. Here’s a great thread from Dustin, who explained that going over the luxury tax isn’t as detrimental as it’s made out to be.
... doesn’t mean they can’t get back under in a year or two. They literally paid a $50M penalty to sign a ton of IFAs in 2015-16, but they won’t go over the LT at a rate of 20% on the overage? That doesn’t square, especially with all the revenue coming in ...— Dustin Nosler (@DustinNosler) December 11, 2019
And they don’t have to go right up to $248M to land elite players because of all the cutting they’ve done Over the last 2-3 offseasons.— Dustin Nosler (@DustinNosler) December 11, 2019
If the Dodgers sign Rendon, their team gets an immediate upgrade, and there’s arguably no better lineup or infield in all of baseball. They get a third baseman for the next seven or eight years, who will likely continue to be one of the best in the game.
I understand that people are hesitant to spend money on large contracts, but sometimes, certain players are simply worth it. Not to mention, compared to what the market is, he could be a value. Cole only plays once every five days, where as Rendon will be an every day player, at potentially $50 million less of the cost.
I’ll end this article as I ended mine yesterday. The Dodgers are in the drivers seat with this one. If they don’t land Rendon, there’s nobody to blame but themselves. They can get it done. The question is, will they?