Dodgers MLB free company questions: Aaron Judge on the radar?

Dodgers’ Trea Turner, proper, smiles whereas taking batting follow earlier than Recreation 1 of the NLDS towards the San Diego Padres on Oct. 7.

(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Related Press)

The Dodgers have confronted a state of affairs like Trea Turner’s earlier than.

Final yr, the group let homegrown All-Star shortstop Corey Seager attain free company, then didn’t match the 10-year, $325-million deal he acquired from the Texas Rangers.

This winter, with the out-of-contract Turner in line for a equally large payday, the Dodgers must as soon as once more determine how decided they’re to maintain one other All-Star shortstop from departing in free company.

The group did have discussions with Turner’s representatives a couple of potential contract extension previous to the season, however no formal provide materialized. Turner stated he could be open to staying in Los Angeles long-term — one thing individuals contained in the group consider to be true, even with the Florida native’s East Coast roots — but additionally didn’t wish to proceed negotiations in the course of the season.

It now leaves his probabilities of a Dodgers reunion in a precarious place.

Turner is as dynamic of a risk as virtually anybody in the marketplace. He’s a profession .302 hitter. He stays a premier stolen base risk. And since 2019, solely fellow free agent Aaron Judge has extra wins above substitute amongst place gamers, in response to Fangraphs.

Turner can also be going to be getting into his age-30 season, two years older than Seager was final offseason. And this previous yr, he battled some inconsistency on the plate and within the subject, although nonetheless was elected an All-Star starter and performed a team-high 160 video games.

Certainly, Turner can be one of many greatest names in the marketplace, and at certainly one of baseball’s most vital (and costly) positions. He should not have any scarcity of suitors, and no dearth of profitable choices to select from.

Financially, the Dodgers ought to have the power to match any provide that comes Turner’s method. However — even with out an apparent shortstop successor ready within the wings — it appears simply as attainable the bidding for his providers surpasses what they’re prepared to spend, and that for a second straight winter they watch a top-level shortstop land some place else.