Five roster needs the Dodgers must address at the 2022 trade deadline

Dodgers
Jul 21, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Craig Kimbrel (46) celebrates defeating the San Francisco Giants with catcher Will Smith (16) at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

It seems clear that the Los Angeles Dodgers trade rumors for 2022 are about to hit a fevered pitch. There always seems to be a lot of Dodgers trade news in late July with Los Angeles frequently pursuing the best players available.

There’s no reason to think that 2022 will be any different. But what will the Dodgers trade deadline look like and who are the Dodgers trade targets going to be?

Dodgers trade rumors 2022

As mentioned, the Dodgers will surely be shopping at the top. However, the Dodgers trade rumors in 2022 will depend somewhat on the team’s biggest needs.

To help figure out the top Dodgers trade targets at the deadline, let’s do a deep dive into what Los Angeles needs and what players can fill those needs.

Starting Pitcher

A vast majority of the Dodgers trade rumors in 2022 will revolve around the team’s starting pitching. On the surface, that doesn’t seem to be a huge need for the Dodgers.

Clayton Kershaw, Tony Gonsolin, and Tyler Anderson were all all-stars while Julio Urias has been great despite a disappointing record. The Dodgers also have Dustin May working his way back from Tommy John surgery while Walker Buehler could also return from injury before the end of the season.

However, the Los Angeles rotation was also in good shape last year when the Dodgers traded for Max Scherzer to make them even stronger. That is likely to happen again this year with the Dodgers trade targets.

In other words, the Dodgers are likely to pursue Luis Castillo, who is undoubtedly the top starting pitcher available on the trade market right now. While Castillo doesn’t have any postseason experience, he would give Los Angeles another frontline starter to lengthen the team’s rotation ahead of the playoffs.


If not Castillo, Frankie Montas and Tyler Mahle could also add depth to the Los Angeles rotation. Pittsburgh’s Jose Quintana could be another option, although that would potentially overload the Dodgers with lefties with Kershaw, Anderson, and Urias already in the fold. Of course, there isn’t much value in the Dodgers adding depth for the sake of depth. If they add a starting pitcher, it’ll likely be Castillo or nobody.

Bullpen

While adding to the starting rotation is more of a luxury for the Dodgers, the bullpen should be the team’s focal point ahead of the trade deadline. Some of the more experienced members of the Los Angeles bullpen are injured while closer Craig Kimbrel took a 4.35 ERA into the all-star break.

Granted, it’s far from a bleak picture with the way Evan Phillips and Alex Vesia have pitched. But the Dodgers know they can’t take any chances with their bullpen when the postseason arrives, which should create some sense of urgency in addressing the bullpen.

David Robertson of the Cubs is arguably the biggest and most familiar name that is likely to be traded among relief pitchers. However, the Tigers could be a trade partner to watch with Los Angeles.

The likes of Gregory Soto, Michael Fulmer, Joe Jimenez, and Andrew Chafin have all been mentioned as potential trade chips. The Dodgers tend to go above and beyond at the trade deadline, so trading for more than one of Detroit’s relievers is a strong possibility.

Along those same lines, Mychal Givens of the Cubs is another interesting reliever to watch ahead of the deadline, especially if the Dodgers like Robertson and want to create a larger trade package with the Cubs.

Power Hitter

The fact that Juan Soto is now on the trade block is the only reason the Dodgers could be interested in adding a power hitter at the deadline. If the Dodgers target a big bat, it’ll likely be Soto.

The fact that Cody Bellinger and Max Muncy have provided a little power but not much else could also push the Dodgers to boost the middle of their lineup. But Freddie Freeman and Mookie Betts are a good tandem with Justin Turner starting to come on strong.

That should be enough for the Dodgers to feel good about where they are moving forward. Of course, if they can work out a trade for Soto, they won’t be shy about pulling the trigger and adding him to the middle of their lineup.

Versatility

Over the last decade, the Dodgers have always had versatile utility players. But with Enrique Hernandez no longer with the team and Chris Taylor on the IL with a broken foot, that’s one element the Dodgers are missing on their current roster.

Muncy and Bellinger provide a little bit of versatility, although neither is having a strong offensive season, which negates some of their usefulness.

That could lead the Dodgers to find a versatile utility man who can come off the bench and play a variety of roles for them. Both Brandon Drury and Donovan Solano of the Reds could fit this description. Whit Merrifield of the Royals is another option, especially since his value has fallen, yet he provides some upside based on his recent track record.

Outfield Depth

If the Dodgers don’t find a way to acquire Soto, they could look to find another way of adding to their outfield depth.

Taylor’s injury and Bellinger’s offensive struggles have left LA a little short-handed in the outfield, relying on the likes of Zach McKinstry, Jake Lamb, and Trayce Thompson to contribute. They may not be shopping at the top of the market with Andrew Benintendi.

But a veteran outfielder like Ian Happ, Tommy Pham, Tyler Naquin, or Ramon Laureano could be a good fit for the Dodgers.

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About Bryan Zarpentine 244 Articles
Bryan Zarpentine is a freelance writer and editor with most of his work focusing on the world of sports. He is a 2008 graduate of Syracuse University and still resides in upstate New York.

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