The Los Angeles Dodgers made a surprising move on Friday, near the end of spring training.
If we analyze the move piece by piece, we will find that the Dodgers gave up a really good outfielder to get a really good reliever, but they could have re-signed Jansen, who was a free agent, and kept Pollock.
What we don’t know, however, is the Dodgers’ valuation of Jansen: maybe, just maybe, they saw some signs of steep decline and decided to go elsewhere.
After all, they have a long, successful track record of talent evaluation and player development, so they deserve a pass.
What became evident after Friday’s transaction was completed is the fact that the Dodgers have the money, the prospects, and the players to acquire virtually who they want.
The Dodgers Have Endless Resources
They have endless resources, and they used them today.
“How do the Dodgers replace a closer with 350 career saves? They acquire a closer with 372 career saves,” writer Blake Harris tweeted.
How do the Dodgers replace a closer with 350 career saves?
They acquire a closer with 372 career saves.
— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) April 1, 2022
According to the always reliable Baseball Reference, Kimbrel and Jansen are ninth and 13th, respectively, in the all-time saves list in MLB.
Kimbrel has 372 and Jansen is at 350, and both are expected to handle ninth inning duties in their respective teams.
Kimbrel had a very good 2021 overall, with a 2.26 ERA, but after the trade that sent him to the Chicago Cubs, he posted a 5.09 ERA.
He has to prove he can still be an elite late-inning reliever after those rough 23 innings on the south side, but the smart money is on him figuring things out.