In the end, the Los Angeles Dodgers got their man. It just took a couple of years longer than they would’ve liked. With less than an hour to go before Tuesday’s deadline, they acquired Brian Dozier from the Minnesota Twins.
“The Dodgers today acquired second baseman Brian Dozier from the Minnesota Twins in exchange for infielder Logan Forsythe and minor leaguers Luke Raley and Devin Smeltzer.”
Despite hitting the ball hard at a career-best rate of 35.3 percent, the results haven’t been there for the second baseman. He’s only slashing .224/.305/.402 with 16 home runs. Keep in mind that he hit 76 home runs over the previous two seasons. After averaging a 128 wRC+ the past two seasons, it sits at 91 in 2018. That said, Forsythe has been no picnic for the Dodgers either. Especially this season.
In 189 games, he hit .218/.325/.314. At least he got on base a lot in 2017 at a clip of .351, right? That’s got to count for something.
Now, what about the other two players the Twins are getting?
Smeltzer, who turns 23 in September, posted a 4.73 ERA, 4.16 FIP and 3.74 DRA across 83.2 innings at Double-A Tulsa. Raley, who turns 24 in September, put up a .275/.345/.477 line with 17 doubles and 17 home runs — also at Double-A Tulsa. The Dodgers didn’t have to give up much to get Dozier, and rightfully so. That said, where does he fit on this roster? Well, that all depends on the health of Justin Turner.
If Turner continues to battle injuries down the stretch, Dozier provides cover. Breakout star Max Muncy can slot over to third while Manny Machado mans shortstop, allowing Dozier to slot right into the role he’s familiar with. And if Turner can stay healthy down the stretch, Dozier becomes an option off the bench. It’s not hard to see why the Dodgers made this trade. So sure, this move doesn’t move the needle all that much.
But that’s what Machado was for.