The Los Angeles Dodgers went a win away from winning the World Series last year. One of the reasons why the Dodgers almost won the title last year is their pitching depth, but they might need more help in the upcoming season if they want to at least go deep into the playoffs.
According to Jason Reed of LA Sports Hub, the Dodgers are in an unfamiliar territory. He pointed out that the Dodgers had a lot of success over the past five seasons due to their starting pitching depth. But this year, Reed believes the Dodgers should trade for another starter such as Michael Fulmer and Chris Archer.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts named Clayton Kershaw, Alex Wood, Kenta Maeda, Rich Hill, and Hyun-Jin Ryu as starters, according to the Los Angeles Times. Outside of their current starters, they only have unproven pitchers Brock Stewart, Julio Urias, and Walker Buehler. Roberts admitted that they do not have the pitching depth that they had before.
Reed added that trading for Fulmer or Archer later in the season will help the Dodgers in their postseason push. While they can survive with their current starters, he pointed out that injuries could hurt them later in the season. He is also convinced that the Dodgers would find a way to stay under the luxury-tax threshold even if they acquire either Fulmer or Archer because both pitchers have manageable contracts.
Fulmer went 10-12 in 25 starts with 3.83 ERA and 114 strikeouts. The 25-year-old was also linked to the New York Yankees, who offered Clint Frazier, Tyler Wade, Thairo Estrada to the Detroit Tigers. The Tigers turned down the trade offer, according to Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
It remains to be seen whether the Dodgers would have enough assets to convince the Tigers to trade Fuller. Mario Phillips of Dodgers Way suggested that Los Angeles should offer Joc Pederson, Alex Verdugo, Keibert Ruiz, Mitchell White, and Edwin Rios to Detroit for Fulmer and relief pitcher Shane Greene. While it might look lopsided, Phillips said that it makes sense because it will give the Dodgers a high-caliber starter, and a quality reliever.
Archer is also an ideal target for teams in need of starting pitching help. The 29-year-old went 10-12 in 34 starts with 4.07 ERA and 249 strikeouts. While his numbers are not too impressive compared to other starters, he was actually the 11th best pitcher in terms of Deserved Run Average last season, according to Baseball Prospectus. He is also a controllable pitcher because he has two years and two options years left in his contract, per Spotrac.