The Los Angeles Dodgers are in a dogfight in the National League West this season.
Before the year started, L.A. seemed like the runaway favorite to win the division, but the San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres are proving to be legitimate contenders.
Currently, the Giants have a two-game lead atop the division with Los Angeles in second place and San Diego in third.
With the race heating up, many Dodgers fans want to see the team add some talent at the trade deadline.
Let’s take a look at a couple of potential best-case-scenario deals for L.A.
2. A Trade For Raisel Iglesias
A team can never have enough relief help.
The Dodgers have one of the best bullpens in baseball (their 3.64 bullpen ERA ranks ninth in the Majors) but adding one more piece could go a long way.
Los Angeles Angels righty Raisel Iglesias could be a great fit.
He is in the final year of his contract, and with the Angels falling out of contention in the American League, he could come at a very cheap price.
Iglesias has a 3.40 ERA, 3.51 FIP, and 0.90 WHIP across 38 appearances this season.
For his career, he has a 3.17 ERA.
The veteran has some postseason experience and would be a key addition for this Dodgers team.
L.A. would be his third team in the past two seasons.
He is likely to be traded—it’s just a matter of where he lands.
The #Angels need to either extend Raisel Iglesias now or trade him.
They have to do one of those two, and they can’t just keep him with no extension.
Lock him up as a solution to the bullpen or get value back for him. Doing neither would be an incredibly irrational move.
— nmbaseball (@nmbaseball) July 20, 2021
1. A Trade For Max Scherzer
The L.A. rotation has faced some monster setbacks this season.
Young star Dustin May was lost for the season to Tommy John Surgery, former Cy Young winner Trevor Bauer is currently on the shelf as he faces some very distributing sexual assault allegations, and just a couple of weeks ago, Clayton Kershaw hit the injured list with a forearm injury.
Fortunately, Kershaw is expected to return in August, but he’s just one piece to the puzzle.
Clayton Kershaw, expected to return in August: "Everybody wants me to be back as fast as possible, but I also want to be as good as I can be in October."
— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) July 17, 2021
On the bright side, the Dodgers have gotten strong campaigns from Walker Buehler (2.27 ERA) and Julio Urias (3.63 ERA) this year, so once Kershaw returns, the team will have three really solid rotation arms.
But L.A. is going to have to get clever about filling in the remaining spots.
Tony Gonsolin has done a nice job as a starter lately, but it remains to be seen how sustainable that is.
Gonsolin aside, many of the other experiments for replacements haven’t looked promising.
If the Dodgers really want to sure things up, a trade for Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer would do the trick.
He is in the final year of his contract and is working on another great season.
He has a 2.83 ERA, 3.49 FIP, and 0.87 WHIP over 18 starts.
The righty would change everything for the Dodgers, and they’d be able to roll with a four-man rotation of Kershaw-Scherzer-Buehler-Urias in the postseason.
Scherzer has had postseason success in the past.
He has a career 3.38 ERA in 22 playoff outings.
Seeing him in Dodger Blue would be something crazy.
Truthfully, the Dodgers are going to be title contenders regardless of whether they make any additions at the deadline.
This team simply has too much talent to take a quick exit in the playoffs.
Starting pitching depth is easily the biggest concern, but even if the Dodgers have to roll with a four-man rotation of Kershaw-Buehler-Urias-Gonsolin in the postseason, that’s still a pretty solid group of arms.
A lot of teams would kill for that.
We’ll see what the Dodgers end up doing as the deadline approaches.