Welcome to our fourth installment of ‘Mound Visit Monday’. Every Monday, we take a look back at notable transactions that took place over the course of this week in Dodgers history dating back to 2000.
This week, we take a look at what took place between February 7-13.
2006: Signed Takashi Saito as a free agent
The Dodgers have had All-Star closers over the last two decades in Kenley Jansen and Eric Gagne. However, in between those two was another All-Star closer in Takashi Saito.
He spent three seasons with the Dodgers and was truly one of the more underrated closers in baseball during his tenure. He finished seventh in Rookie of the Year voting in 2006 and was eighth in Cy Young voting. In 2007, Saito was named to the National League All-Star team.
During his three years in Los Angeles, Saito appeared in 180 games. He posted a 1.95 ERA, 2.14 FIP, 0.91 WHIP and 227 ERA+. He had 81 saves, which is tied for the ninth most in franchise history.
2020: Dodgers acquire Mookie Betts & David Price from Red Sox in exchange for Alex Verdugo, Jeter Downs, Connor Wong
2020: Dodgers acquire Brusdar Graterol & Luke Raley from Twins in exchange for Kenta Maeda & minor leaguer Jair Camargo
This one doesn’t really need much explaining. One of the biggest trades in Dodgers history went down, as LA acquired one of the top players in baseball in Mookie Betts. This trade was on hold for about a week, as the Red Sox reportedly weren’t interested in acquiring Brusdar Graterol.
The trade had to be re-worked and ultimately Graterol ended up with the Dodgers in a separate deal with the Twins.
Overall, what a day it was for the Dodgers. Betts helped the Dodgers win a championship in 2020, along with Graterol. Both players plan to be part of LA’s future plans for a long time.
2021: Traded Cody Thomas and Adam Kolarek to the Oakland Athletics. Received Gus Varland and Sheldon Neuse
2021: Traded Dylan Floro to the Miami Marlins in exchange for Kyle Hurt and Alex Vesia
Nearly a year after making two trades in the same day, the Dodgers followed that up with making two more trades, though these weren’t as exciting.
The biggest move was acquiring Vesia from the Marlins. Vesia turned into the Dodgers’ best left-handed option out of the bullpen last year and will be one of their top options moving forward.
The other trade was essentially a wash. Neuse was awful for the Dodgers and was designated for assignment this offseason. Kolarek was awful for Oakland last season and appeared in only 12 games.
Thomas appeared in 59 games in AAA and hit 18 home runs with an OPS of over 1.000. Maybe he turns into something at the major-league level. Varland appeared in 16 games for Tulsa last season but posted an ERA of just below 6.00.