Acquiring Zack Greinke Will Make Dodgers World Series Favorites

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Acquiring Zack Greinke Will Make Dodgers World Series Favorites
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
Zack Greinke would put the Dodgers over the top in their quest to reach the World Series for the first time since 1988.

The Los Angeles Dodgers worked feverishly during the 2012 season to quickly turn the team into an instant World Series contender. While the Dodgers came up short in 2012, signing free-agent starter Zack Greinke would complete L.A.’s transformation into championship favorites.

Los Angeles made a number of midseason trades to upgrade the talent on its roster. A pair of blockbuster trades made former All-Stars Hanley Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett and Carl Crawford members of the Dodgers organization, all within a month’s time.

But the additions of Ramirez, Gonzalez and Beckett weren’t enough to help Los Angeles overcome a series of devastating injuries to key players. Crawford never had the chance to help after Tommy John surgery on his left elbow ended his season in mid-July.

Matt Kemp, Chad Billingsley, Ted Lilly and Kenley Jansen all spent significant time on the disabled list as the Dodgers finished eight games behind the San Francisco Giants in the National League West standings. Insult was added to injury (literally) when the Giants won their second World Series title in the last three seasons.

The new players now have a full offseason to get acclimated to their new surroundings, and all the injured Dodgers are expected to be completely healthy early in the season. That alone will improve a team that had the major league’s best record through mid-June.

Los Angeles has a potent lineup and a deep bullpen, but the starting rotation still faces questions heading into the season. Signing Greinke would immediately turn a potential liability into an area of strength.

Here are five reasons why the addition of Greinke will make the Los Angeles Dodgers favorites to reach the 2013 World Series.

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