With the Mets representing the N.L. in the World Series. Dodger fans find themselves looking towards changes in 2016.

Under-Review-1

It’s technically the hot stove season in Los Angeles. Which means feet everywhere will soon be sporting Uggs.

Free agency officially begins five days after the end of the World Series.

The biggest thing on everyone’s mind in the City of Angels is whether or not Zack Grienke will resign and reunite his valuable arm with co-ace Clayton Kershaw?

There’s also the matter of who will be at the helm when the Dodgers open camp at Camelback Ranch – Glendale?

After last seasons whirlwind of an off-season. We should assume that it will be difficult to predict which way the front office guru’s will take our beloved team? That being said, one could also say, that it just makes the challenge more fun.

What are your thoughts so far, as to roster construction, from the placement of a new coaching staff, all the way to trades and acquisitions?

Who would you like to see stay?

Who would you like to see go?

Who would you like to see join the 2016 Dodgers?

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46 thoughts on “With the Mets representing the N.L. in the World Series. Dodger fans find themselves looking towards changes in 2016.

  1. I honestly think the entire team will be different. Adrian and Corey are probably the only two that are certain to be on the team. (Kershaw is a given).

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  2. Interesting article in the LA Times today on bold, creative managing during the playoffs–the #1 reason why I think Donnie is now history. While he may be a nice, guy, get along with the FO and communicate well with players (still debatable in my mind), he still remained an in-game robot. Here’s what La Russa (not my favorite, but….) had to say about the post-season:

    “You have to play each game with that 100% urgency. But it’s fun not having to weigh the long-term of the regular season against the short-term of the playoffs. It’s all about the moment. That urgency is what makes it exciting and really crystallizes your decision-making.”

    As far as what I’d like to see in 2016: Wallach as manager–continuity, he’s earned it, plus, he has proven success, earning Manager of the Year at AAA. I’d like to see a young, proven power bat in LF (sorry Andre) to go along with a resurrected Pedersen and Puig…..Greinke re-signed…..and a bullpen that can actually pitch and not just throw hard.

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    • I haven’t read the article yet, so thanks for sharing…I do think there is a whole lot of truth in this.

      My problem with Wallach is that he was the 3B coach during the hidden ball trick that found Uribe looking like a fool. He was again the bench coach during the base-on-balls play – that Murphy advanced to 3B on… In my mind, if he was alert such as his competitors were at the time…neither of these things happen.

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  3. I just hope there aren’t too many changes. We know what we got, so it’s not broke. Not too much repair work is necessary.
    BUT, I’m afraid they’ll be a lot of changes and who knows what lies ahead?

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  4. Here goes:

    First of all, all the coaching staff goes, maybe with the only exception being Lopes, but he would first have to answer why he hasn’t been more instrumental in successful base stealing.

    I would get rid of Gonzalez if we can get something useful for him. I know he was the valuable piece in the Boston trade, but he hasn’t been able to bring us to a World Series, which I’m sure was the original intent, and he’s in enough of a decline that I wouldn’t expect him to be a key piece to bring us to one under his remaining contract years.

    I would keep Hendrick, if he would accept a one year deal; otherwise, just make him a qualifying offer, and good bye.

    Seager needs to be groomed and continue as our long range short stop.

    Turner needs to be kept and given a longer term contract in line with what competition is likely to offer. Have him work on his fielding, both at second and third base.

    Greinke – one of the best memories of 2015, but unlikely to repeat those numbers, and certainly not over a seven or eight year period of a new contract. I would let somebody else give him that Kershaw-beating new long term contract.

    Outfield:
    Do anything possible to get rid of Crawford, once and for all.
    Keep Pederson, but either get his swing straightened out (by anybody but McGraw) or send him back to the minors for seasoning.
    Keep Puig for one more season, but demand that he straighten out his act – new management should have the opportunity to see if we can get him back to the form a couple of years ago.
    Keep VanSlyke – I think he’s been under-used for someone who was always able to bat .300 and with power.
    Use at first base is useful, but I’d definitely let him also bat against right-handers. 2016 would be his make it or break it year.
    Andre – keep (partly because nobody is likely to take on his remaining contract). I also think that Andre would benefit most from new management, and I think he has a couple of reasonably good years left in him.

    Bullpen: Anybody but Jansen is expendable, but I don’t see anyone in our farm system ready for the big leagues.

    Not really familiar with names that will be available through free agency, and I have a feeling that anybody really good will be overpriced. Let’s just avoid the “proven veteran” tags of past years – I’d rather get some top AAA talent or someone who’s in the majors just for his first one or two seasons.

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    • I enjoyed your thoughts on the subject Bear.

      I would expect them to shake loose from the books, one, if not both of Crawford and Ethier’s contracts?
      As we stand today the team has $8,500,000 owed to Michael Morse and $3,500,000 to Matt Kemp. according to Cot’s. They also owe some buyout money (should they so choose) to Utley ($2M) and Arroyo ($4.5M).

      I’ve seen five years and $150 million being used as a low-ball guesstimate of what Greinke should get…I’d be surprised if he tops the Kershaw contract of 7 years and $215 million?

      Interesting facts of the Kershaw contract.

      Kershaw may opt out of contract after 2018 season
      Award bonuses: $1M for Cy Young. $0.5M for 2nd/3rd in vote
      Assignment bonus: $3M if traded during off-season
      If traded during season, may void deal after World Series
      If traded during off-season, may void deal after one season

      Also while looking up contracts, I was reminded that Friedman’s agreement runs through 2019.
      So essentially, he has 4 years left to reshape this team into his idea of a champion.

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  5. I have no idea if any of the coaches should be retained but I do not agree with the reasons quoted above by Bear and D4. To blame Wallach alone for that third base brain fart is not fair. That was a weird play and I wonder how much, if any, time was spent during Spring training or during the year on all the issues that could come up from all the defensive shifts. Certainly the players should have been prepared for who should cover the base in that scenario but let us look back at that play. Seager says he never practiced that play because they did not use all those shifts in the minors. So I would say the coaching staff takes the “blame” for not having him better prepared. But there were two other highly experienced players on the field who could have protected the base, Grandal and Greinke. As I recall, Greinke had his head down, discouraged at walking the batter that allowed the runner to get to second base. Not sure what Grandal was doing but he clearly had no thought of watching the base. Therefore, I do not how we can blame one person for this situation but if you really want to place blame (and I do so hate the blame game), then fault Greinke for giving up the base on balls.

    As for Davey Lopes. I like the guy and hope he does stay. But once again, blaming him for the lack of a running game is also not fair. Does he make the decisions about who should run and when? Wasn’t it Donnie himself who had little faith in his players abilities to steal bases? It was only when Crawford got back into the lineup that somehow this philosophy changed.

    I may have mentioned this before but this subject reminds me of a conversation I had with Reggie Smith when I attended Dodger adult fantasy camp some years ago. I asked him about why players don’t bunt more and he said, and I quote, “You cannot get a player to do something he does not want to do”. How many times did we see players come to bat with the defense shifting so dramatically that it seemed the logical thing to do was lay down a bunt (as opposed to just hitting it to the vacant side of the infield)? And how often did a hitter actually do this? Rarely. And the defense was not even worried it might happen. Please draw your own conclusions.

    As to the rest of the roster, I doubt the Dodgers would trade Gonzalez. I understand his production really tapered off as the season progressed but unless there is someone else to replace him both in the lineup or at first base, I think he will still be a Dodger next season. It also seems to me if the Dodgers could have made a deal that made sense for Crawford and/or Ethier, they would have made such a deal. Why would either one’s value be any more today than it was a year ago? I was one of those who felt the Dodgers should consider a deal for Puig depending on what he might bring but now I agree I would like to see him start the season healthy. I am not ready to give up on Joc Pederson quite yet. I still might put Crawford and/or Ethier out there to see what is available. I like the idea of having Kendrick back for another season if he would take a one year deal, perhaps at a slightly inflated price to entice him to do so but I would not expect him to accept such a deal. We will see.

    Would I pay Greinke $150 million for 7 years? This is going to be a tough call because the pitching has little depth at the moment. If the FO can indeed find a couple of serviceable guys to take his place in the rotation I think that is what they will do. Friedman has made it clear he does not want a roster filled with older players.

    The real challenge for this FO is to figure out how to develop its own players, which means it has to draft better. We have been told there have a lot of personnell changes in the scouting department and minor leagues. The big problem is this is a long term process. I don’t think Dodger fans have much patience for this to happen but that should not stop the organization from trying.

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    • I never claimed that Wallach was solely to blame for that play, Birk. There are plenty of scenarios where the outcome could have been different, just as you have mentioned. I do maintain that as a bench coach, and former third baseman himself, Wallach should have seen that play developing from the dugout and been shouting for someone to cover the bag. The club under Donnie’s watch played lackadaisical baseball. My sentiment was I want a manager who keeps his head, as well as the team in the game at all times.

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  6. OK stats geeks, I decided to compare strikeout percentages for the players who will be back, mainly because these guys have such a terrible time making contact and driving in runners in scoring position. It’s also hard to get on base when you strike out! For fun, I also included base-on-balls percentages. Interesting results.

    Strikeouts per At-Bats ratios:
    Pedersen – 35%
    Grandal – 30%
    Van Slyke – 30%
    Guerrerro – 26%
    Hernandez – 24%
    Crawford – 23%
    Puig – 23%
    Ellis – 21%
    Ethier – 20%
    Gonzales – 19%
    Seager – 19%
    Turner – 18%
    Kendrick (if he’s back) – 18%

    How about walks per plate appearances:
    Pedersen – 16%
    Grandal – 15%
    Ellis – 15%
    Seager – 13%
    Gonzales – 10%
    Ethier – 10%
    Kendrick (if he’s back) – 10%
    Turner – 9%
    Van Slyke – 9%
    Puig – 8%
    Hernandez – 5%
    Crawford – 5%
    Guerrerro – 3%

    What does it all mean? Couldn’t tell you…

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  7. How about this. Make a trade for Harvey, deGrom and or Syndergaard. That won’t only help the Dodgers but could also break up the Mets who may stand in our way for a couple of years.
    With the pitching and now timely hitting, the Mets look like they’ll be around for a while.
    It looks like it’s them and not the Cardinals, that’ll rule the N.L.

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  8. Im having hard time accepting that NLDS Loss. Perhaps, in part, I think the Dodgers were a better team, also known that Grienke probably wont be in Dodgers Blue, and without him I can see a third place finish next year, It is an even year therefore the Giants will be calling, and the Padres and/or Snakes will adjust to get better, not sure the Dodgers can. Greinke is smart he will go where the offer of highest money for the longest time. Ryu will be back as what? McCarthy? Anderson, Wood, Urias, who will make up our SP?
    If we are still talking about the walk to third brain fart, And it seems as if our season pivoted on that play, then why not discuss the Dre catch of a foul ball, that led to that run scoring. Drop it and it is strike 2, with grienke more than capable of getting a SO for out 2, and eliminating the fly ball sacrifice.On the flip side, things could of gone sideways and more hits or errors could of occurred, so getting the out is paramount, as it only tied,and it was only the 4th inning. Yea I know speculation. and we know the true loss came as a result of NO HITTING with RISP! and again the dodgers have to put together a bullpen that will support good starting pitching, whatever form that takes.
    It seems like there is a changing of the Guard in the NL, Cards got tossed, Dodgers got tossed, Giants didnt make it. Nationals didnt make it. Pirates, Mets, Cubs seems to be gaining traction whereas the others are losers. Fortunately, that may all change by the time April rolls around or even next August.

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    • Other than the blowout game, I think you can totally blame the series loss on failure to hit with RISP. We only lost the other two games by a total of 3 runs, and they were well pitched games. One well timed hit and we take the series. Its been the bane of this team every year that McGwire was the hitting coach and Donnie Dumbass was the manager. Last team I remember that was timely with their hitting was 2009 when Dre went crazy with the walk-offs. I’m hoping the new manager knows how to play the game with the personnel he’s given and not try and fit all the square pegs in the round holes like his predecessor.

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  9. Right now my whole interest has gone into the World Series, as it has the passed couple of years, with an eye on what the Dodgers are up to. It doesn’t look like anything is going to happen on the Dodger’s front anyway until after the World Series.

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    • I would have to imagine that having your home-team in the Series, is a pretty good (close but no cigar) scenario for you, Oldbrooklynfan? So far though, it doesn’t seem to be the popular sentiment of this blog…

      Go Mets!! (They beat us fair and square) Unlike the Cards…who threw that hardened cheese-ball into Hanleys ribs…and they darn sure aren’t the Jints!!

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  10. In the end it was the lack of hitting with risp that did us in, as koufax and Beav have already pointed out. If memory serves, the Dodgers had more chances against de Grom than the Royals had last night and could not deliver. A lot of us thought and said so on here that the Dodgers were not a playoff caliber team and they proved it once again against the Mets.
    *
    Next year? Right now I think there are to many holes to successfully fill to become a contender. But…we’ll see what changes the genius’ in the front office give us. Now is the Winter of my discontent. Like my other favorite, the Sooners, the Dodgers seem to start every preseason talking about the world series or a national championship, when in fact there are many things to do and many teams to beat before you can get to these. I think that bull shit should be set aside, then shut up and get to work.

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  11. So I assume that Donnie basically had an offer from Florida on the table (which is tampering BTW, though I care not) and Donnie tried unsuccessfully to get a bigger better contract extension out of the FO like he did 2 years ago. Except this time Donnie obviously overplayed his hand and they called him on it. Loyalty goes both ways there Donnie, you Yankee POS. What Donnie did “manage” to do was cost a bunch of coaches their jobs, even if only briefly.

    Going to love seeing Florida lose and have Donnie’s excuse ridden style exposed by east coast writers. Be prepared Marlins fans, nothing’s ever Donnie’s fault.

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  12. It doesn’t come as much of a surprise that Mattingly has just become the manager of the Marlins. He’s out of our division but still in our league. I can’t wait until we play against him.
    Good Luck Don.

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  13. I certainly agree Crawford should be bundled with Donnie and sent to Miami, or anywhere else.
    It’ll be interesting, to me at least, to see how our new manager does in the coming year(s) and we see just how bad Donnie was. Or wasn’t.

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  14. Human nature is a funny thing. A guy breaks up with his girlfriend…and then gets jealous if anyone asks her out. Mattingly’s departure stirs up that kind of anxiety in some of us. Not me. I wish Donnie Baseball well…but I won’t miss him. In my aging years (that sounds shitty just writing it), the journey has become far more enjoyable than the destination, especially when it comes to a baseball season. If the Dodgers win a championship, I’ll celebrate for 24 hours…and then that’s it. But I feel as if I’m finally free of boring baseball, you know, the kind of baseball that eschews the squeeze play, the stolen base, any kind of gambling endeavor. I’m free of laid-back, robotic baseball. I welcome the change and look forward to a new approach. Now get the damned TV deal fixed!

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  15. Crawford really, really, really needs to go away… FAZ should be scouring every other teams roster for players with bad contracts like Crawfords. The only way I see us unloading Crawford is eating another bad contract in exchange for someone taking his sorry ass off our hands and paying his contract. Who knows, maybe a change of scenery will make a good difference in both cases. Hopefully at least for our side. Just a thought…

    Otherwise, I would try to package him with Gonzales or Puig in a deal. Yes, everyone is available in my book except Kersh, Jansen, and Segar.

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    • And please get rid of McGwire… We need a hitting coach that preaches contact and putting the ball in play. This team strikes out way too often always trying to hit a home run. Watch the Royals. That is the way to play baseball…

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  16. Donnie and Dee back together again. ” NO Dee!, don’t steal. Stanton is coming up and I dont want first base open, for stanton to be intentionally walked”

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    • You bring up a good point. The Dodgers will take Giancarlo Stanton as compensation for tampering…and I’ll bet Friedman placed an anonymous phone call to the Marlins suggesting covert overtures to Donnie…

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