Sometimes when making an effort to rebuild a team, many general managers make the mistake of choosing the best player available on the market rather than addressing one particular area where the squad is weak.
Instead of paying millions for a superstar, then trying to find out how or where a certain player will mesh with the team, the good general managers will first break down the specific needs of the club and make a checklist, then when considering any new additions, they check to make sure that each prospective player meet the required criteria.
Such should be the case with the Los Angeles Dodgers this offseason.
Many people, including Los Angeles General Manager Ned Colletti, continue to refer to the Dodgers' "core" talent of players. There's no question that a core of talent does indeed exist, but there are a few tweaks that are required and several areas that need to be addressed before the Dodgers can once again become contenders.
Seemingly, money will be the biggest question mark for Los Angeles when assembling a roster and preparing for next season. However, several experts, including Tony Jackson of ESPN Los Angeles, believe that owner Frank McCourt will do all that he can to push the team payroll up to the $100 million range.
After all, the Dodger fan faithful is the driving force of the franchise, and if the fans aren't happy, then the seats aren't filled at Dodger Stadium, and the team doesn't generate dollars. Without question, after everything the McCourts have put the organization through, Frank should be on the ground kneeling to his own employees and the fans in an effort to assure them that he will do his best to put the Dodgers back on the right track.
This includes spending money on several high-quality big market players, and not your everyday 10-year veteran who is lurking in the bargain basement. Whether it be through free agency or trades, there isn't any reason that Los Angeles shouldn't at least improve from the 2010 season if careful moves are made.
Yet before even targeting a specific player, Colletti should make a list of specific needs, prioritize them, then decide which available players on the market fulfill the requirements he chose to list.
The following slides show five specific areas that Colletti should consider when putting together the Los Angeles Dodgers roster this winter.