2. Do the Dodgers acquire a co-ace for Clayton Kershaw?
The answer is most likely yes, but it’s anyone’s guess as to who that pitcher is. Greinke is the obvious frontrunner, but the Dodgers will have a limit on how much they’re willing to spend on him and if another team exceeds that limit, he could be headed elsewhere. That said, they’re still going to push hard to re-sign him after his Cy Young caliber season, knowing that failing to could be a PR disaster.
Greinke is 32, but his ultra-finesse approach has a lot of people convinced he can stay dominant for several more years. The Dodgers are also interested in David Price and Johnny Cueto, but so are plenty of other teams that can offer those aces just as much money — and the unquestioned number-one role in their rotations. With Jordan Zimmermann now off the market, the next best free agent starter may be a mid-tier option such as Mike Leake or Wei-Yin Chen.
If all else fails, there are several other intriguing starters on the trade market. The perpetually rebuilding Atlanta Braves are dangling ace Shelby Miller. The Cleveland Indians want a hard-hitting outfielder, and they’re willing to part with one of their talented pitchers to get one. Given the Dodgers’ surplus of outfield depth, a trade seems like a perfect fit. Of course, given Andrew Friedman’s track record, any deal that materializes will probably stun everyone and involve pieces that weren’t even considered to be available.
And speaking of trade availability…