Breaking News: Dodgers Linked to ‘Obvious’ Shortstop Target Projected for $132 Million Deal

Dave Roberts

The Los Angeles Dodgers will be kicking off the 2024 season in Seoul in a matter of days, but their 2024 roster still might receive an upgrade at any time.

As the team scrambles to solve defensive issues at shortstop that have been apparent throughout Spring Training, MLB insider Ken Rosenthal noted that the front office might seek a fix in a trade with the Milwaukee Brewers.

“A trade for a shortstop hardly is out of the question for the Dodgers — if not by Opening Day, then at the deadline,” Rosenthal reported for The Athletic.

“Willy Adames remains an obvious target, and the Milwaukee Brewers’ chances of contending diminished with the news that closer Devin Williams will miss around three months after being diagnosed with two stress fractures in his back.”

Adding to the likelihood of a trade is the fact that Adames will become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.

The Brewers might look to get some trade value back for him before he enters the open market, where Rosenthal’s colleague Tim Britton projects he will earn a six-year, $132 million deal.

The Los Angeles Dodgers Might Turn to a Trade to Solve Significant Shortstop Issues

Even after spending more than $1 billion this offseason, the Los Angeles Dodgers failed to make a significant upgrade at shortstop, trusting that homegrown prospect Gavin Lux would be ready to take the mantle.

Last season, Lux was set to take over the position from two-time All-Star Trea Turner before a knee injury in Spring Training left him sidelined for the rest of the year.

The team went on to win 100 games with Miguel Rojas handling the role.

Lux was poised to finally take on the mantle for 2024, but significant defensive issues throughout preseason derailed that plan again. Manager Dave Roberts moved him to second base and slotted Mookie Betts, a six-time Gold Glove Award winning outfielder, into the everyday shortstop role for the first time since he was a teeanger.

Even though Betts seems up for any challenge, the learning curve will be steep.

“Even for a player as gifted as Betts — a seven-time All-Star widely considered one of the most well-rounded players in the sport — making a short-notice switch to arguably the toughest defensive position on the diamond is hardly a recipe for seamless success,” Jack Harris noted for the Los Angeles Times.

A Trade for Willy Adames Can Answer the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Questions at Shortstop

By adding Adames, the Dodgers would solidify the toughest utility position on the diamond with a bat that can hold down the tail end of their potent order.

Adames has been the fourth-best defender at the position since 2021, according to FanGraphs.

In 2023, the 28-year-old slashed .217/.310/.407 with 24 homers and 80 RBI, numbers that put him firmly in the fourth tier of MLB shortstops.

If Lux can hold down second base and Adames can take over at shortstop, the Dodgers would have the option of moving Betts back to the outfield, taking a significant defensive load off of his shoulders and unlocking even more production from the plate.

They could also flip Lux in the trade or try to move him to the outfield, letting Betts go back to second, where he played in 2023.

In any case, adding Adames would open up a lot of flexibility for Roberts and the Dodgers.

“If the Dodgers get even a whiff of the Brewers throwing the season or cracking the door on trade offers for Adames, they should be first in line,” urged Katrina Stebbins of Dodgers Way.