Los Angeles Dodgers Trade Rumors: Latest Updates and Reaction
The Los Angeles Dodgers weren't expected to contend in 2012, but they've been leading the NL West for much of the season and they're primed for a strong second half with Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier due to return from the disabled list.
General manager Ned Colletti won't be resting on his laurels over the next couple weeks, however. His team has holes that need patching, and he's now backed by an ownership group that very much wants the team to see its hot start through to October.
The Dodgers are going to be active during deadline season. They'll be linked to numerous teams and numerous players, some of whom bear pretty big names.
For all the latest Dodgers trade rumors and reaction, check back here periodically for updates. The latest news will be right up front.
Dodgers and Cubs Finally Closing in on Ryan Dempster Deal?
Posted: Tuesday, July 31 at 12:25 p.m. ET
The Dodgers have acquired Shane Victorino, thus filling their need for an everyday left fielder and a leadoff man.
Their need for starting rotation depth remains, but perhaps not for long. Here's the latest from ESPN's Jim Bowden:
Cubs and Dodgers finally closing in on the Dempster deal according to a source close to the negotiations— JIM BOWDEN (@JimBowdenESPNxm) July 31, 2012
It was just a matter of time before a tweet like this came out. The Cubs and Dodgers have been in a stalemate over Dempster for a few days now, but the odds of the Cubs holding on to Dempster were always slim. All the Dodgers had to do was wait them out.
The question is how much the Dodgers are willing to give up, and they may not be willing to give up much now that we know that Alfonso Soriano is no longer in play. A deal between the Dodgers and Cubs will only involve Dempster, and the Dodgers have made it clear that they don't think he's worth all that much.
The two clubs have a little over three hours to get this deal done. I'd put the odds of it getting done right around 2-1.
Additional Update: Tuesday, July 31 at 2:05 p.m. ET
There are two hours to go until the trade deadline, and now it sounds like talks between the Dodgers and Cubs are breaking down.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that the Dodgers are not alone in the Dempster sweepstakes:
The Cubs could be trying to gain some much-needed leverage in their talks with the Dodgers, or they could be serious about dealing Demspter elsewhere.
The issue with that is that there's precious little time remaining until the deadline, and it's obvious that the Cubs have spent a lot more time talking to the Dodgers about Dempster than they have talking to other teams about him.
This thing may not get done until the buzzer.
DODGERS ARE OUT: Tuesday, July 31 at 3:50 p.m. ET
According to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, the Dodgers will not be trading for Ryan Dempster:
Source: the #Dodgers are out on Ryan Dempster.— Dylan Hernandez (@dylanohernandez) July 31, 2012
If you're curious to hear how this happens, you're not alone. I am too. The Dodgers seemed to have Dempster in the bag.
Maybe Colletti took the hardball stuff a little too far? That's my guess.
Dodgers Acquire Shane Victorino
Posted: Tuesday, July 31 at 11:30 a.m. ET
It looks like the Dodgers are going to land a new left fielder on deadline day.
ESPN's Jayson Stark says talks are centered around Josh Lindblom:
This deal would make sense for the Dodgers because Lindblom was made expendable by the club's acquisition of Brandon League late on Monday night. It also makes sense for the Phillies, who desperately need bullpen help.
The deal isn't final yet, but it sounds like it soon will be.
When it is final, the Dodgers can go ahead and cross Alfonso Soriano off their wish list. They won't be going after him if they already have Victorino penciled in as their starter in left field down the stretch.
They'll probably still be in on Ryan Dempster, though. Stay tuned.
Done Deal: Tuesday, July 31 at 12:05 p.m. ET
According to Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports, the deal is done:
Phillies have traded Victorino to Dodgers for Lindblom and Ethan martin— Tim Brown (@TBrownYahoo) July 31, 2012
In Lindblom, the Phillies are getting 25-year-old reliever who has a 3.02 ERA in 48 appearances this season. Martin has a 3.58 ERA in 20 starts for Double-A Chattanooga.
The Dodgers are getting an everyday left fielder who they can bat at the top of their lineup. Victorino may be having a down year, but his .724 OPS represents a massive upgrade for a Dodgers team that has gotten a .554 OPS out of its leadoff hitters this season.
Dodgers Acquire Brandon League
Posted: Tuesday, July 31 at 1:15 a.m. ET
The Dodgers have made a trade for a right-handed pitcher, and they didn't have to give up top prospects to get him.
League has already made 46 appearances this season, posting a 3.63 ERA.
League was an All-Star in 2011, ultimately finishing with a 2.79 ERA and 37 saves. He posted a career-high 4.50 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
That number has taken a dive this season, as League's K/BB checks in at a mere 1.42. He's walking nearly four batters for every nine innings pitched.
Still, the Dodgers were looking for bullpen depth and now they have some. This also gives them the opportunity to trade one of their young relievers, such as Josh Lindblom, for a veteran player.
Either way, a good pick-up for the Dodgers.
Updates on Ryan Dempster, Alfonso Soriano
Posted: Monday, July 30 at 1:45 p.m. ET
The Cubs want to trade Ryan Dempster. The Dodgers want to trade for him.
Clearly, things shouldn't be so complicated. But my goodness, are they complicated.
The discussions between the Cubs and the Dodgers regarding Dempster have been stuck in a stalemate for a few days now. Both sides know where the other stands, and neither side is willing to budge.
But according to Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports, the talks are still ongoing:
Meantime, the Cubs-Dodgers talks regarding Dempster trundle along. They're still at it...— Tim Brown (@TBrownYahoo) July 30, 2012
And for the record, Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com says that Alfonso Soriano is still in play for the Dodgers in the Dempster talks:
In other words, the status quo is holding. The Dodgers are trying to squeeze whatever they can out of the Cubs.
In this case, what Ned Colletti is trying to do is kill two birds with one stone. His club needs both starting pitching depth and a power-hitting left fielder. He won't be able to do better than Dempster/Soriano combination to solve these problems.
He has roughly 24 hours to figure the situation out.
Additional Update: Monday, July 30 at 3:15 p.m. ET
Well, this is a good sign.
According to Scott Miller of CBSSports.com, the Dempster negotiations between the Dodgers and Cubs are gaining momentum.
That's about all the report has to offer, but it's fair to speculate that one of the clubs got the ball moving out of desperation. I for one think that would have to be the Cubs, as the last thing they want to do is hold on to Dempster beyond the trade deadline. They want to get something for him while they can.
The writing is on the wall that they'll have to settle for less than what they perceive to be fair value if they choose to deal with the Dodgers. It's therefore worth noting that ESPN's Jayson Stark says that the Nationals have positioned themselves as a perfect fallback option if the Cubs can't get something done with the Dodgers.
For the first time in a few days, the situation is fluid.
Additional Update: Monday, July 30 at 4:40 p.m. ET
Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus has heard that a few select prospects are off the table in the Dempster talks:
Heard that Zach Lee, Allen Webster and Chris Reed are all off the table in any Dempster talks.— Kevin Goldstein (@Kevin_Goldstein) July 30, 2012
According to Baseball America, Lee, Webster and Reed are the Dodgers' No. 1, No. 2 and No. 5 prospects, respectively.
Additional Update No. 2: Monday, July 30 at 6:30 p.m. ET
Maybe all this talk of negotiations between the Dodgers and Cubs picking up steam is overblown. ESPN's Buster Olney has heard otherwise:
Alfonso Soriano has been part of Ryan Dempster talks for days, but there hasn't been any recent dialogue between LAD/Cubs.— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 30, 2012
Once again, we're left with the impression that both sides are staying the course.
Additional Update No. 3: Monday, July 30 at 9:35 p.m. ET
Contrary to what Olney had to say, Jon Paul Morosi of FoxSports.com says that the Dodgers and Cubs are still talking:
The important part is that the deal isn't done yet. Beyond that, I'm done trying to decipher the situation.
Dodgers Circling Shane Victorino
Posted: Sunday, July 29 at 11:05 p.m. ET
But Ned Colletti isn't about to rest on his laurels. He still has a hole in left field to fill, and one of the guys he's still considering to fill it is Shane Victorino.
According to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com, trade buzz surrounding Victorino picked up on Saturday. The Phillies are starting to take trade talks involving Victorino more seriously than they have in days and weeks gone by.
The Dodgers are interested, and Salisbury notes that they scouted the Phillies this weekend.
The price for Victorino won't be too high seeing as how he's having a down year and is a free agent at the end of the season. Even still, one wonders if the Dodgers are willing to pay any price for Victorino after their sweep of the Giants. They're not as desperate as they would have been after a series loss or a sweep at the hands of their biggest rivals.
But we'll see. Colletti could be in a mood to go for a swift kill, and he's certainly got the resources to make a deal for Victorino. With him at the top of their lineup, the Dodgers would find themselves with a formidable offense.
Additional Update: Monday, July 30 at 4:40 p.m. ET
Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com says that the Dodgers are talking to the Phillies about both Victorino and Hunter Pence. He says they're more likely to land Victorino, and he hints that they're only talking about Pence because the Giants are talking about him.
Ned Colletti could be more interested in jacking up Pence's price than he is in actually acquiring him.