Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Dodgers acquire Jim Thome and Jon Garland

In a somewhat surprising move, the Dodgers acquired Jim Thome from the White Sox for minor league middle infielder Justin Fellers. Fellers, a 26-year-old Single-A player, doesn't have much of a future in the Big Leagues, and the Dodgers are only paying $1 million of Thome's remaining $2.4 million salary for the season.

Thome will not take away any regular plate appearances from current Dodger 1B James Loney. Thome will be used strictly as a late-inning pinch hitter.

The Dodgers also acquired RHP Jon Garland from the Diamondbacks for a player to be named later. Speculation is that 2B Tony Abreu will be the PTBNL. The Dodgers will not pay any of Garland's contract, nor the $2.5 million or $1 million buyout for next season. Either the Dodgers just wanted another inning-eater for late in the season or the Dodgers are concerned about Hiroki Kuroda's ability to return to form this season.

While I'm not thrilled with Garland as a pitcher, the Dodgers didn't exactly give up a lot for him. Abreu has been in the Dodgers' doghouse for the last three years after experiencing injuries -- some of which the team felt he could have played through.

Despite Orlando Hudson not guaranteed to return to the Dodgers after the season, it's rather clear Abreu wasn't going to get much of a chance to be the everyday second baseman for LA.

Overall, these are two solid trades that didn't cost the Dodgers much in terms of talent or money.