Dodgers News: LA President Doesn’t See Club Signing Free Agent Player at this Time

Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told reporters the team won’t likely turn to the barren free-agent market to replace Gavin Lux.

Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman is a very smart man, possibly the smartest person in any MLB front office. But you don’t need to be the smartest guy in the world to figure some things out.

Friedman talked to a scrum of reporters including AM 570 LA Sports Radio, and when he was asked if Los Angeles might look at the free-agent market to fill a hole after shortstop Gavin Lux’s season-ending injury, his response was blunt:

“It’s hard for me to get into free agent players. But my guess is that it will come from within or a trade.”

Translation: Have you see what free agents are left?

There are five shortstops left on the market: Didi Gregorius, Dee Strange-Gordon, Andrelton Simmons, Alcides Escobar, and Jose Iglesias. The best of those, Iglesias, can best be described as “the poor man’s Miguel Rojas,” so he wouldn’t be an improvement over what they have.

And Friedman made it clear he’ll only make a move if it’s a clear improvement.

“I think we feel like the guys that we have here are really good group and so, for us, if we’re going to add from the outside, it’s going to be something that either fit us differently or is just a more impactful player in our mind.”

If we expand to other infield spots, Jonathan Villar is the only even remotely interesting free agent left. He’s played all three positions Rojas was expected to play before he became the starting shortstop, so he would make sense as a direct replacement for Rojas. The catch? He can’t really hit. In ten years, he’s had three decent offensive seasons and one average one. Overall, his career OPS+ is 94, and he hasn’t been what you’d call a “good” player since 2019.

With the defensive flexibility LA has, if they don’t swing a trade for an impact player, Lux’s hole is likely to be filled either by Michael Busch or James Outman, both of whom are likely to be quite a bit better than any of those names we mentioned above.

So yes, Andrew Friedman is very smart, but no, it didn’t take a genius to figure this one out.

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