While I love baseball season, and love watching my favorite team play (I think you all know who that is), it’s hard to beat the excitement of the free for all that is the MLB off-season. It’s a time where teams will either make the big signing that will catapult them into contention for a pennant, or it will be where teams completely unload their roster and start things anew. Either way, watching as guys go from place to place, or well, from Boston to New York which is usually the case, it’s always intriguing.
When we look at the Dodgers, they’ve already got one guy back that some thought had no business returning. And that’s Manny Ramirez. Look, I know Manny is a fielding fiasco. He’s the definition of a one-man wrecking crew in the outfield, because chances are, he’s going to wreck a potentially easy play. But, it’s hard not to keep the guy on the team. Manny is likely getting towards the end of his career, but his long ball potential is still something that I like to have on this team, so I’m fine with the re-signing of Manny.
The problem that re-signing Manny does present is figuring out what to do with Juan Pierre. Dodger fans fell in love even more with Pierre when Manny was suspended for the female fertility thing. And what’s not to love about Pierre? He’s fast, he can cover a lot of ground in the outfield, and he’s dangerous at the plate since he can hit or bunt and still manage to get on base. The only thing lacking in Pierre’s game is arm strength, but he’s certainly got a lot more positives that cancel that out.
But while that’s one guy that didn’t make it to free agency, there’s a ton of players out there that did. As I’ve said before, the focus this off-season has to be on pitching. While I’m perfectly fine with some of the guys in the rotation, there are other guys that I get nervous about every time they step on the mind. Example, Hiroki Kuroda. The bullpen has to be addressed as well, because it is obvious why the Dodgers could get past the Philadelphia Philles for a second straight year. It all came down to pitching, and the Phillies were just better than we were in that category.
We’ll just have to see what types of interesting moves are made by this organization in the off-season in order to gauge what expectations should be for next year. They’ve got the guys in place that they need in the field, now they just need to get a more solid balance on the mound.
And if that happens, then the Dodgers should be able to get over the hump next season, and find themselves in the World Series. But until then, let’s sit back, relax, and see who we get to add to this already impressive squad!