Earlier today, Bob Nightengale reported that A.J. Pollock signed a four-year deal with the Dodgers worth around $50 million. When the offseason started I thought that he would be worth more as well as being one of the earlier signees. I figured he would have a chance to either command a one-year "show me" deal worth just north of $20 million to prove his worth or a five-year deal worth about $90 million. Well, as we all know the market has been abysmal this winter and that didn't wind up happening. I also thought that when the Dodgers and Reds made their trade a while back that Bryce was basically guaranteed to be a Los Angeles Dodger. As of today, that now seems HIGHLY unlikely. The Pollock signing to me makes it seem like the Dodgers have thrown in the towel on Bryce for whatever reason.
So... what the hell does this mean? How are we effected?
The first thought that comes to mind is that the Sox should do everything possible to get Manny Machado signed, sealed, and delivered ASAP. Why? Because I have a very strong feeling that Bryce Harper will remain a Washington National. They've put together some nice acquisitions this offseason to show him that they're serious about winning and I think they are willing to to shell out for him. I don't think the way things went down towards the end of last season has affected their negotiations with him. In general, there is still a good relationship there. OK, so what? What does this have to do with Manny? WE ACQUIRED TWO OF HIS BEST FRIENDS!!! Well, if this happens, there's no doubt in my mind that the Phillies will go to Manny Machado and give him the contract that he's been asking for. They've talked about all of this "stupid money" that they have, and I don't think that they will begin the 2019 season without spending their said money on one of the big fish. I could be wrong, and this is assuming that either of the top guys are buying into what the Phillies have to offer, but I think they would then try to be the high bidder on Manny, which would have an impact on the White Sox.
There are also continuing talks of a Joc Pederson trade going down. However, multiple sources have stated today that the Dodgers are in no rush to part ways with him. Honestly, I don't blame them. Yes, they have a loaded outfield even after trading Puig and Kemp, but depth and versatility are commonalities among nearly every serious contender. Who knows what will happen? Injuries can occur, players don't perform up to expectations, etc. This is particularly true in the case of Pollock, who has injury history. The Dodgers can hope that he stays healthy, but if he gets hurt or isn't the same player and you trade a formidable replacement in Pederson? Well, you're shit outta luck if you're LA. You'd have to either roll with what you've got or give up talent to acquire someone else.
In our case, we could either entice the Dodgers to make a deal or go after other available outfield options if we still decide to address this need (I also want another reliever or two and a starter but I know I have to be realistic). In this case, I'd be okay with the veteran presence of Adam Jones, but would really be intrigued with Marwin Gonzalez. At this point, I don't think he will command as long of a deal as expected, so why not put a feeler out there? A switch-hitter that can play almost every position would do wonders for this team. He's a 2.5 WAR player that has played in many meaningful games over the past few seasons.. Where do I sign up?
Regardless, I do still think that we will wind up with Machado. However, management needs to see the Pollock signing as a potential domino that could have an adverse impact on our big plans. I keep saying that time will tell with these signings, but signifcant time has already passed and the dominoes are starting to fall so LET'S FUCKING GO!