Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Off-season preview, part III

With the McCourt's impending divorce, the free agency period is going to be an uncertain time for the Dodgers.

If their legal issues don't prevent the Dodgers from making significant moves, the Dodgers will be in the hunt for a starting pitcher or two. John Lackey is by far the best starter available, with guys like Randy Wolf, Rich Harden and Erik Bedard could be other targets.

Lackey is going to command a huge pay day (some rumors say as much as $100 million), so I wouldn't exactly hold out hope Lackey hops on I-5 and makes the trip to the real Los Angeles.

Wolf had one of the best seasons of his career and is looking multi-year deal. He shouldn't be that unaffordable, though.

Harden and Bedard are injury risks. In fact, there are concerns whether or not Bedard will even pitch this season. Harden has some of the best stuff in the game, but he can he stay healthy?

Some lesser options include Jon Garland, Vicente Padilla or a reclamation project like Ben Sheets.

It seems the trade route could be better for the Dodgers when it comes to starting pitching.

Second base is also going to be something for the Dodgers to explore.

The signing of Orlando Hudson in February was brilliant and paid off. Hudson brought solid offense and gold glove defense -- the latter of which is something the Dodgers have missed for quite some time. However, his benching toward the end of the season likely spelled the end of his time as a Dodger. He was great and I'm going to miss him.

Ronnie Belliard, acquired in August, is a candidate to come back. However, if the Dodgers think he'll be a viable option for an entire season, they're sorely mistaken. He's a good part-timer and he should be brought back for that purpose.

Felipe Lopez is an intriguing option. He wouldn't cost a lot and would provide some solid offense, as he did this year with Arizona and Milwaukee.

The Dodgers could just as well hand the job to Blake DeWitt or see if Ivan De Jesus, Jr. is ready for the job. However, as is the case with starting pitching, a trade might make more sense to fill the second base need.

Next up: Potential Trade Targets

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