This afternoon, the Dodgers pulled off their first blockbuster trade in a few years. They sent Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp, Kyle Farmer, and Alex Wood to the Reds in exchange for Homer Bailey and prospects Josiah Gray and Jeter Downs.
Let’s take a look at this trade, starting with what the Dodgers are giving up:
Puig has made it clear that he doesn’t want to be a Dodger. He was upset that he didn’t get much playing time against lefties, so he requested to be traded. He hit .267/.327/.820 with 23 homers and 63 RBIs last year. Puig will likely become the Red’s starting right fielder.
Kemp is basically at the end of his career. He is signed for one year with $21.5 million owed to him. He had a terrific comeback first half of the year, earning him a spot on the NL All-Star team. But he faded in the second half an barely played at all in the postseason. If the Dodgers had kept him, he would have taken up a roster spot and a bunch of money.
Farmer has not lived up to his potential. That most likely is because there’s been no room for him on the roster. The Reds were in need of a catcher and Farmer should take care of that need for them.
Wood had an amazing 2017, then faded a little bit in 2018. He still had a decent year, with a 9-7 record and a 3.68 ERA in 151.2 innings. Wood is owed $6 million dollars next year with arbitration the next year.
In addition, the Dodgers are sending $7 million to the Reds to offset the costs. Now, let’s look at what the Dodgers are getting back.
Homer Bailey was absolutely horrendous last year. He owned a 1-14 record with a 6.09 ERA in 106.1 innings. Thankfully, the Dodges have no intentions of keeping him around.
The Dodgers got two prospects in return. They received pitcher, Josiah Gray and middle infielder, Jeter Downs. Both of these prospects were high-round draft picks and scouts especially like Downs.
The purpose of this trade wasn’t so much to make the Dodgers better. Their whole goal was to lose salary to free them up for some more moves. Their other goal was to free up space in the outfield.
Now that the Dodgers have saved some money, they can trade for Corey Kluber or J.T. Realmuto. As you know, they need a new catcher and they now have a lot more flexibility to get Realmuto. They could also use that money to sign a free agent.
But not Bryce Harper. The still don’t have that kind of money or the need for him. Unlike what David Vassegh says on AM 570 LA Sports, Bryce Harper is not needed. We have other needs above another power hitter who can’t hit above .250.