Plenty of talk but no action for Los Angeles Dodgers as trade deadline nears

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “Pitching is what we’ve been concentrating on the last few weeks,” he said.Meanwhile, the bench can stand a tweak or two.Colletti is ready and willing to add to his roster, hence the phone lines he’s been burning almost nonstop recently.“We’re as active as we’ve ever been,” he said quietly.But while the treadmill is great for burning calories, it can be maddeningly confining. Ned Colletti sat in an oversized chair outside his suite at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday. For a guy who doesn’t have much to show yet for all the work he’s put into the trade deadline, the Dodgers general manager sure looked tired.That’s because Colletti’s been pounding the trade deadline treadmill the last few days, furiously working the phones and trading ideas and proposals with his counterparts across baseball.The Dodgers entered Wednesday with the best record in the National League and a 2 1/2-game lead in the National League West. And while their needs might be subtle, they’re real.Like everyone else, they can use more pitching. The top of the rotation is set, but there is always a need on the back end and with bullpen arms so important in a pennant chase and beyond, they’d love to get their hands on a reliever or two to help get the ball to closer Kenley Jansen.center_img No matter how fast you run or how hard you work, when it’s time to cool off, you haven’t moved an inch.And as Colletti looked at his watch Wednesday less than 18 hours before today’s 1 p.m deadline, nothing tangible had changed from the moment he began hitting up the rest of baseball trying to move the Dodgers incrementally closer to the World Series.Colletti insists there are potential deals to be made. Options he can tap into.But finding a willing partner has been difficult.“It takes two teams to make a deal,” he said.Matching up with that partner is becoming a frustrating process.With so much of baseball lured into no-man’s land separating real contention from the make-believe kind, it’s created one of the more passive deadlines in recent memory.“Atypical,” is how Colletti described it.With no super teams emerging to run away with division titles and the wild cards offering playoff hope to so many teams — real or imagined — the pool of available players has dwindled while the list of teams looking for impact returns has increased.The demand is great, but the supply is weak.Even when a seller emerges, the asking prices are so exorbitant, the chances of actually lining up on a deal gets tougher and tougher.And it’s left general managers like Colletti doing a lot of talking but accomplishing very little.In other words, if you’re a Dodgers fan, there’s little sense calling in sick today to monitor your club’s activity at the deadline.Save your sick day for the opening of the playoffs, where the Dodgers most certainly seem to be headed.With or without a big — or small — addition over the next day or so.Yes, they have more than enough assets and money to add one of the big-ticket pitchers available.And if you’re thinking about the postseason, the need is certainly there for one more ace to complete a near bullet-proof playoff rotation.But at this point, that’s more of a want then a desperate need, and the asking price for Boston Red Sox ace John Lister and Tampa Ray’s All-Star David Price are a bit too rich for the Dodgers’ taste. They have three of the top prospects in all of baseball in Joc Pederson, Julio Urias and Corey Seager, but they’ve classified all three as close to untouchable as it gets.“At this point in time we’re not in the market to move any of the three.” said Colletti, reiterating a team-wide objective that nudges the Dodgers away from high-priced outside additions in favor of tapping into their farm system for help.It’s a time they believe is drawing near.For all the money the Dodgers pumped into the big club since the Guggenheim Baseball Group took over from Frank McCourt, they’ve quietly built one of the top farm systems, too.It’s a pipeline they insist will begin pumping young, impact players to the big leagues sooner rather than later. And they envision a time when their farm system lays the groundwork for a strong foundation over the years — rather than having to go outside the organization like they did when they initially took over.Which is why they are so reluctant to part with any of the front-line prospects they’ve assembled to add a potentially short-term addition like Lester or Price.“Anytime you do something short-sighted, it always comes back to bite you,” said Dodgers president Stan Kasten. “Any long-range success you have is the result of a long-term plan.”Pederson, Urias and Seager are part of the long-term plan.Meanwhile, Colletti all but guaranteed Matt Kemp would still be a Dodger by the time the deadline passes, no matter how much chatter there’s been abouthim possibly being moved.None of which came from Colletti.“Nobody’s heard me say we’re moving Matt Kemp. Nobody’s ever heard me say we’re shopping Matt Kemp,” Colletti said. “That comes from another world.”You can pretty much say the same for Kemp’s fellow outfielders. Even with the Dodgers using Kemp, Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier, Yasiel Puig and Scott Van Slyke to fill three positions every night — leading to the obvious speculation one might be moved to clear the log jam — Colletti doesn’t seem inclined yet to make that move. “You’re speculation would be unfulfilled,” he said.That isn’t to say nothing will happen come 1 p.m. today — big or small.But it’s looking less and less likely.last_img

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

Recent Comments