As the MLB trade deadline draws closer, many teams are assessing their respective situations, and deciding whether they should buy or sell. The National League's top dogs, the Los Angeles Dodgers, will more than likely be buyers at the deadline, so let's check out some players they could target.
4. Brad Hand
The Dodgers need some veteran experience in the bullpen, and Cleveland Indians' star reliever Brad Hand could become available if the Tribe can't rally in the season's second half. Hand, who has pitched in the bigs since 2011, could immediately step in and take over closing duties in LA, or be enrolled as a setup man. He's logged an incredible 0.91 ERA this season, to accompany a 0.74 WHIP and 19 saves. He's also recorded 44 strikeouts in just 29.2 innings pitched, good for a 13.3 K/9. Arguably the best reliever in the game, Hand could help lift the Dodgers over the top.
3. Corey Dickerson
With A.J. Pollock out for the foreseeable future, the Dodgers could use some outfield depth. And Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Corey Dickerson could be an enticing fit, as he seems to have lost his job to Bryan Reynolds. Perhaps the Pirates will look to offload him, and LA could be a destination as Dickerson could start in place of Joc Pederson whenever a southpaw is on the mound. Dickerson hasn't played most of the season due to a shoulder strain, but in 2018 he hit .300 with 13 homers and 55 runs batted in.
2. Edwin Encarnación
Why not add some power to the Dodgers lineup? As of right now, Max Muncy is playing first base, with Enrique Hernandez playing second base. Muncy has experience at second in the past, which could bump Kike to a bench role and open up a path to playing time for Seattle Mariners first baseman Edwin Encarnación. The slugger has hit a whopping 21 homers in just 64 games for the Mariners, which puts him on a pace for over 50 home runs on the year. He's also proven to be a more patient hitter, as he has a 40:54 BB:K ratio.
1. Will Smith
San Francisco Giants closer Will Smith has been phenomenal this year, compiling a 2.10 ERA with 15 saves through 25.2 innings pitched. He also has a sparkling 37:5 K:BB ratio and just 13 hits allowed. The 29-year-old will be a free agent at the end of the season, so the Giants will likely be very inclined to move him. He would be a great option for the Dodgers as a bridge to closer Kenley Jansen if they can work out a deal, though it's hard to envision the Giants being too thrilled over the thought of trading with their NL West rivals.