Dodgers Need to Make "Doc Hollywood" Next Blockbuster

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Dodgers Need to Make
(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

Dear Ned Colletti and Lord & Lady McCourt,

First, let me offer my congratulations on what has been a very winning first half of the season for the Dodgers, even with the distraction of what I'll call the 600 lb. pregnant elephant in the room.  The young hitters know how to put runs on the board in a hurry and play small-ball.  The rotation, which at the begining of the season looked like a motley crüe of has-beens and never-weres, has been sparkling.  Joe Torre has been every much the calming influence and winner those billboards you put up before last season said he'd be.  The team has been the best in baseball, has a seven-game lead in its division and looks to be well on its way to making its third playoff appearance in four years.  Again, congratulations.

But I'm not here to talk about the past.  I'm here to talk about the future, specifically yours with Roy Halladay in it.  After all, baseball isn't about what you do from April through July, it's about what you do in October.  Your team has shown itself to be phenomenal by the standards of the regular season and I expect that it will continue to do so.  However, I'm still not sure if it's good enough to win what I'll call the whole Dodger Dog, especially when playoff-tested teams like the Phillies and Red Sox could be standing in the way.  Adding Halladay to the staff would provide just a little more peace of mind to me and the rest of Azul Nation.

Give the Blue Jays whatever they want, short of Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, Chad Billingsley or Clayton Kershaw.  I'm pretty sure Manny and his issues don't fit into their plans right now anyway.  Everybody else is fair game.  Russell Martin, who is a hometown hero in Toronto, and James Loney are good contact hitters, but aren't much better than replacement-level players at their positions.  Besides, Martin has a lot of wear and tear for a 26-year-old given the position he plays and Loney's never had the power you want from that corner position.  Throw in one or two of these kids who haven't proved themselves at the major league level yet, like Scott Elbert or James McDonald, and let's make this deal happen.

Now, to those Blue Jay fans who would argue that they deserve more for the guy who could be the best pitcher in baseball, might I remind you that he'll be making $15.75 million next season as a 33-year-old.  A 33-year-old who, while a great pitcher, has only hit the 200K mark twice in his 11-year career.  It makes no sense to give up young pitchers who are already contributing in the majors as number one and number two level starters, have nowhere to go but up, and are only making a fraction of Doc's salary, so just stop ogling Billlingsley and Kershaw right now.  Seriously, you're creeping them out.  If that's what other teams are offering, then yes, the Dodgers should probably start thinking about a Plan B.

For now, let's stick to Plan A.  Acquiring Halladay will pre-empt whatever moves the Giants, your division rival, and the Phillies, the team that knocked you out last year and a likely opponent in a short ALDS series this season, could be cooking up, starting with stealing Halladay from the likes of you.  This zero-sum game will be the first shot fired in the 2009 playoffs and you should be the one with your hands on the trigger.

Now, Ned, I know you don't like to part with the organization's young and rising stars and that's a very admirable trait.  But you've shown yourself willing to do so when you felt like it gave the Dodgers a better shot at winning the ultimate prize.  You know, like when you got that gamer Casey Blake last season for Carlos Santana, the guy who might be the second-best catching prospect in baseball right now behind Matt Wieters.  Hey, it's not like making Russell Martin expendable right now would have been useful.  Oh, and I'm sure the fans at Chavez Ravine wouldn't have been psyched to hear "Oye Como Va" blaring from the speakers for the next fifteen years.  I know that you prize the organization's youngsters so much that, frankly, I'm shocked that we haven't seen you in a kitchen with Chris Hansen yet.  But we need you to go out and get one more geezer just this once.  It could make all the difference between a championship and nothing.  To borrow a line from Gene Hackman's character in "Get Shorty," this could be your "Driving Miss Daisy."

Lord & Lady McCourt, nothing will continue to bring droves to the Stadium like the team's first World Series pennant in twenty one years.   Not even billboards with Kim Kardashian on them.  If Halladay does end up becoming the last piece of a championship puzzle, your tenure as Dodger owners will be legitimized, no matter what harebrained marketing schemes you hatch in the future.  They'll never be able to take that championship away from you.  Best of all, you can justifiably raise parking fees another $5 next season.  Just imagine, people will give you a whole $20.00 bill, just for the right to leave their car on a flat piece of land in downtown Los Angeles for three hours.  It's just like you dreamed it as a kid, right, Frank?

Now, how about showing some real boldness and trading for Halladay right before the All-Star Game, which he is rumored to be starting for the American League?  Bud Selig won't know what to do, the American League will be shell-shocked, and the National League might be just able to slyly pry away World Series home-field advantage.  After you acquire Halladay, trust me, you'll need it.

Sincerely,

Ian

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