The idea, while rebuilding the farm system, is to win right now. To put together the best lineup, rotation and bench possible.
So if you’re the Dodgers, what does that mean for Dee Gordon? Probably that he’s not in their plans for 2013. And that if somebody is interested in the young shortstop and offering something reasonably significant, and usable now, you listen.
Not too surprisingly, word has come out of the winter meetings in Nashville that the Dodgers are open to offers for Gordon, though it has to be emphasized that’s a long way from trying to move him.
The Dodgers still like him, are still interested in how he develops, still think he could be league-leading base stealer.
But he did not look major-league ready at the plate last season (.228 batting average, .280 on-base percentage) nor on the field (18 errors in 79 games). Right now he appears headed back to triple-A.
That still leaves the Dodgers with a couple of problems on the left side of the infield. When we last saw the Dodgers, Hanley Ramirez was the starting shortstop and Luis Cruz the third baseman.
It’s hard to imagine the defensively limited Ramirez as the everyday shortstop on a championship team. And despite his surprising play at age 28, hard to count on Cruz repeating it over the course of a full season. Anyway, if I’m the Dodgers, I’m not. And that’s not even taking into account his inability to draw a walk.
Which means it also should not come as a surprise that the rumor of the moment is the Dodgers are looking for a shortstop or third baseman.
Hopefully they find a shortstop to their liking, meaning Ramirez would back over to third where he is less of a defensive liability.
Adding a shortstop does not necessarily mean Gordon is gone. The Dodgers could add a veteran and still keep him in Albuquerque to continue his development. They are, after all, big on bringing depth to their system.
For the coming season, however, it seems clear Gordon is not in their plans. And with a hole to fill on the left side.
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