Los Angeles Dodgers Trade Rumors: Latest Updates, News and Reaction

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistJuly 1, 2014

Los Angeles Dodgers Trade Rumors: Latest Updates, News and Reaction

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    Although the Los Angeles Dodgers have the highest payroll in baseball, they may be an active team at the 2014 MLB trade deadline.

    When looking at the team's roster, it's tough to find much of a weakness. The outfield, when healthy, is so talented that Matt Kemp often finds himself as the odd man out. The rotation, which features two different pitchers who have thrown a no-hitter this season, is easily the best in the majors.

    Los Angeles may look at dealing one of its high-priced outfielders in order to bring back some valuable pieces. The bullpen is an area that could certainly use some help.

    As we have seen in recent seasons, ownership is willing to make a move if it helps the team. Don't be surprised if the Dodgers are active at this year's deadline.

    Make sure to keep checking back here to see what rumors the Dodgers are involved in or what deals the team makes as the MLB trade deadline approaches.

Done Deals

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    July 28: Acquired 2B Darwin Barney and cash from the Chicago Cubs in exchange for RHP Jonathan Martinez 

Dodgers Are Reportedly Pushing Hard for Padres' Joaquin Benoit

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    Update: July 31 at 12:25 p.m. ET

    The Dodgers are pushing hard to land San Diego Padres reliever Joaquin Benoit to improve their bullpen, according to The New York Post's Joel Sherman.

    --End of Update--


    The Los Angeles Dodgers are interested in San Diego Padres reliever Joaquin Benoit, according to Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal. Unfortunately for the Dodgers, if the Padres do trade Benoit, they'd prefer to trade him outside of the National League West.

    Benoit signed a two-year, $15.5 million contract (which includes a vesting option for 2016) with San Diego in the offseason. He signed the deal to be the setup man to Huston Street, but after Street was traded earlier in July, Benoit has become an even bigger part of the bullpen.

    The right-hander is 4-2 with three savesincluding two since Street was tradedand a 1.88 ERA this season. He saved 24 games for the Detroit Tigers last season, so he showed that he can be a reliable closer. This year proved that he can also be a solid setup man.

    San Diego got a big return for Street, and now that very few closers are available on the market, the Padres can try for a similar return if they decide to trade Benoit.

Dodgers Expected to Add Bullpen Arm by Deadline

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    The Los Angeles Dodgers have yet to add a reliever this season, but ESPN's Buster Olney believes that the team will find a way to add an arm to the bullpen by the time the deadline passes.

    The Dodgers' bullpen (3.71 ERA) ranks 22nd in the majors, so adding an arm should definitely be a priority.

    So far, the team has been linked to Philadelphia's Jonathan Papelbon, Boston's Andrew Miller and San Diego's Joaquin Benoit.

Potential Trade Target: LHP Cole Hamels, Philadelphia Phillies

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    Update: July 29 at 11:15 p.m. ET

    Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal tweets that the Phillies have not asked a team for anything specific, nor have they been offered anything, in exchange for Hamels. This contradicts an earlier report from USA Today's Bob Nightengale that indicated the Dodgers had been asked for Pederson, Seager and Urias.

    --End of Update--


    Update: July 29 at 7:22 p.m. ET

    For what it's worth, Dodgers manager Don Mattingly says that he's "not expecting anything huge" at the trade deadline, tweets Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times.

    While the incredibly high asking prices for the best players on the market are certainly a turnoff for Los Angeles, you simply can't count the Dodgers out of anything until the clock strikes zero.


    Update: July 29 at 6:21 p.m. ET

    The Dodgers recently asked the Phillies what it would take to land Hamels and were told it would take a package that included Joc Pederson, Corey Seager and Julio Urias, USA Today's Bob Nightengale reports.

    As you'd imagine, the Dodgers politely said thanks but no thanks and went on their merry way.

    Unless the Phillies decide to lower their asking price, a rotation that includes Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke and Cole Hamels is something that will be reserved for All-Star Games.

    --End of Update--


    The Philadelphia Phillies are one of the true sellers on the market, and the Los Angeles Dodgers are interested in Cole Hamels, if he truly is available. 

    Fox Sports' Jon Morosi reported that the Phillies have made Cole Hamels available, for the right price. Recently, The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo reported that the Phillies want four to five prospects in return.

    The 30-year-old is 5-5 with a 2.72 ERA and a 1.153 WHIP in 18 starts this season. He has 125 strikeouts in 122.1 innings this year. Although his strikeouts-to-walk ratio is one of the worst of his career, his strikeouts per nine rate is the second-best of his career.

    Hamels is a three-time All-Star and has placed in the top 10 of Cy Young award voting three times.

    The southpaw is owed $90 million over the next four seasons, which is a contract that not many teams could take on. The Dodgers just happen to be one of the teams that can afford him.

    Hamels' contract does allow him to block a trade to 20 teams, according to FOX Sports' Jon Morosi, but the Dodgers are one of the nine teams Philadelphia can trade him to without his permission.

July 28: Dodgers Acquire 2B Darwin Barney from Chicago Cubs

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    The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired Darwin Barney and cash from the Chicago Cubs for a player to be named later or cash. The Dodgers announced that they sent right-handed pitcher Jonathan Martinez to the Cubs to complete the trade.

    Barney was recently designated for assignment by the Cubs, so the Dodgers were able to work out a trade with the Cubs.

    Barney had played for the Cubs since 2010 and has turned into one of the league's best defenders. He even won the Gold Glove at second base in 2012.

    Unfortunately for him, his bat cost him his job.

    After hitting .276 during his rookie season, but his average has not been anywhere close to that since then. Last season, he hit only .208. He was hitting .230 with two home runs, 10 doubles and two triples in 72 games this season.

    Los Angeles has plenty of hitters in its lineup, so it can probably afford to choose defense over offense with Barney.

The Latest on Matt Kemp

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    The Los Angeles Dodgers outfield is so talented that Kemp often finds himself riding the pine when everyone is healthy. Yes, the same Kemp who signed an eight-year, $160 million deal less than three years ago.

    Update: July 27 at 3 p.m. ET

    ESPN's Jayson Stark reported that other teams believe the Dodgers are more likely to deal Matt Kemp in the offseason than they are at the trade deadline.

    --End of Update--


    Update: July 27 at 3 p.m. ET

    There has been some interest on the market for Matt Kemp.

    Once again, the Boston Red Sox are interested in Kemp, according to ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes. The Red Sox would reportedly consider a deal involving Kemp for Jon Lester.

    Yahoo Sports' Jeff Passan reported that the Seattle Mariners are interested in the outfield and would eventually convert him to a designated hitter. ESPN New York's Andrew Marchand reported that the New York Yankees are not currently interested in Kemp.

    --End of Update--


    Update: July 25 at 3 p.m. ET

    It looks like the Dodgers may in fact be ready to move Matt Kemp. According to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, Los Angeles is making calls in efforts to trade the outfielder, and at least five teams are interested in the star.

    Kemp's agent Dave Stewart talked about the possibility of his client being traded: “Eight years is a long time to be in one place. Sometimes change is good. This might be the time to change.” 

    --End of Update--


    Update: July 17 at 10 a.m. ET

    Although it does not appear that the Los Angeles Dodgers are inclined to trade Matt Kemp, the outfielder's agent, Dave Stewart, told Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal that his client will be happy with whatever the team chooses to do as long as it gets him on the field. Kemp would like to be a center fielder, but he just wants to play every day.

    Here's what Stewart said: Whatever they want to do we’re favorable to, as long as it gives him an opportunity to play every day. He’d like to eventually go back to center field. He’s not opposed to right or left. But his hope at some point is to get back to center.

    --End of Update--


    It's tough to find everyone playing time, but it does not appear that the Dodgers will attempt to move Kemp. The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo wrote that Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti does not intend to move Kemp.

    Kemp is obviously not the same player that he was at the time of contract extension. Since the beginning of the 2012 season, which is the season right after he signed the deal, the outfielder has played in only 251 games.

    Injuries have obviously slowed him down during that time. He is no longer the center fielder that he was during his prime, and his average has dropped in every season since his breakout 2011 season. He has shown some power this season after hitting only six home runs in 73 games last season.

    Kemp still has a good bat. Right-handed power isn't easy to find, so trading him could make Los Angeles weaker from the right side.

    Kemp's name was thrown around a lot in the offseason. The Boston Red Sox were one of the team's interested in the veteran in the winter, but according to WEEI.com's Rob Bradford, there's "nothing going on" on that front as of now.

Potential Trade Target: LHP Andrew Miller, Boston Red sox

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    The Boston Red Sox may be ready to sell off some pieces, and the Los Angeles Dodgers are interested in a few of their players if they do. According to Peter Gammons, the Dodgers are interested in left-handed reliever Andrew Miller.

    Miller is 3-5 with a 2.48 ERA and a 0.942 WHIP in 48 appearances this season. He has held right-handers to a .193 average this season, but as a southpaw, he has been even better against left-handed hitters (.155).

    The 29-year-old has turned his career around since becoming a full-time reliever in 2012.  He had a 3.35 ERA in his first full season as a reliever, and it just continues to drop in each season. His strikeouts per nine innings (14.5) are at an all-time high, and his walks per nine (2.9) are the lowest of his career.

    Miller has adjusted nicely to his role as a reliever. The Dodgers could use some bullpen help, so Miller is on their radar.

Potential Trade Target: RHP Jonathan Papelbon, Philadelphia Phillies

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    The Philadelphia Phillies may look at trading closer Jonathan Papelbon, and it's very possible that the Dodgers could be a potential landing spot. ESPN Los Angeles' Mark Saxon reported that a baseball source expects the Los Angeles Dodgers to make a run at Papelbon. 

    Update: July 17 at 9 p.m. ET

    Earlier this week, ESPN Los Angeles' Mark Saxon reported that the Los Angeles Dodgers were expected to pursue Philadelphia Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon. That doesn't appear to be the case anymore.

    Saxon reported on Thursday that the Dodgers are not interested in Papelbon.

    --End of Update--


    Some of the Phillies' veterans have not sounded very willing to waive their no-trade clauses. Papebon isn't one of those players. The Philly Inquirer's Matt Gelb tweeted that Papelbon said he'd accept a trade if he was able to go to a contender.

    The right-hander is 2-1 with 22 saves in 38 outings this season. He also has a 1.21 ERA and a 0.857 WHIP in 37.1 innings in 2014.

    Whenever Papelbon's name has been mentioned in trade rumors in the past, money has always been a big issue. The 33-year-old is owed $13 million this season and next, and he has a $13 million vesting option for the 2016 season. Of course, money isn't much of a problem for Los Angeles.

    The Dodgers already have Kenley Jansen, Brian Wilson and Chris Perez in their bullpen. Each of those relievers have experience closing, but none of them have had the type of success that Papelbon has had. The Phillies closer is a five-time All-Star and has a career 1.00 ERA in 18 postseason games. His veteran experience would certainly help the Dodgers.