It is fairly clear now why the Dodgers passed on players at the deadline. I think it is also clear that Washington wanted 2 of Gavin Lux, Dustin May, and Tony Gonsolin plus, plus, plus. That was not going to happen. But there had to be interest in Diego Cartaya, Bobby Miller, Michael Busch, Miguel Vargas, Andy Pages, Gavin Stone, Landon Knack, and Maddux Bruns, right? Of course there was. But not so much interest in Jacob Amaya, Michael Grove, Justin Bruihl, Andre Jackson, Edwin Ríos, Eddys Leonard, or Jorbit Vivas? Certainly not the kind of interest to get Juan Soto or Luis Castillo or Frankie Montas.
Why the distinction? It really does become clear when you recognize the roster crunch that is coming. Trading the first group of players does nothing to reduce the 40 man roster. The Dodgers have as many as 8 players who may be coming off the 60 day IL in the next two months. 5 almost certainly…Dustin May (August), Edwin Ríos (August), Brusdar Graterol (August), Blake Treinen (Late August/Early September), Tommy Kahnle (Mid September). Then there are 3 more who are reportedly going to be ready in September…Walker Buehler, Victor Gonzalez, and Danny Duffy.
All eight of those players will need to be added to the 40 man before being reinstated to the active roster. Who is going to be DFA’d? To make it even more curious, the Dodgers traded a non 40-man roster player for Joey Gallo who was added to the 40-man. Admittedly, Gallo is an enticing wild card, but what if it is between adding Walker Buehler to the roster or retaining Joey Gallo and holding Buehler out for the year? It could happen.
Andrew Friedman on where Walker Buehler is now.
“Each day, it’s been better. We’re monitoring that progress on a daily basis, that said, we’re gonna be smart about it. So to the extent it continues to improve day over day over day as we get into a throwing progression…”
Friedman also hinted about a potential bullpen role or mid-inning reliever when Walker gets back.
“Yeah, I think anything is possible… We’ll figure out where he is and factor it in and round out our pitching staff with the guys we have now and some combination of guys we have coming back. … We feel like that 13-man staff is absolutely going to be a strength for us in October.”
Another curious move was the addition of former LAD prospect Rylan Bannon who was picked up off waivers from Baltimore. One has to figure that Bannon is also in a more precarious position than others. The Dodgers may try to squeeze him through waivers and send him to MiLB. That is what Baltimore was reportedly trying to do.
IMHO, there are two relatively straight forward DFA candidates…Jake Reed and Eddy Alvarez. But what about after that? I thought at the time (and wrote it) that I thought it was unnecessary to add Eddys Leonard or Jorbit Vivas to the 40 man. I cannot think of one team that would have selected either player and positioned them on the active roster all year.
To be fair, if not Leonard or Vivas, it would have been someone else added.
So trade them for lower level prospects to clear space? Nope. Only players who are NOT on the 40-man roster, and have not been on the 40-man roster at all this season, can be traded after August 2. To create roster space, a 40-man roster player will need to be designated for assignment. If they are designated now, some team will pick them up to place them on their 40 man. They will not have to be held on the active roster (26-man).
What if it is only 4 that will need to be added…Dustin May, Brusdar Graterol, Blake Treinen, and Edwin Ríos? That still needs four that will need to be designated. Ríos is playing every day at OKC, and can remain on rehab assignment for 20 days.
MLB: Per Article XIX-C of the CBA and with the player’s consent, a player on the MLB 10-day,15-day, or 60-day Injured List may be assigned to a minor league club for rehabilitation purposes for up to 20 days (for “position players”) and up to 30 days (for “pitchers” and for “two-way players”).
That period is due to expire on August 16. There is no reason to add him to the active roster at that time, but he does need to be activated to the 40-man. He could conceivably be optioned to OKC, and brought back up in September or not brought back.
Dustin May was sent out on rehab to Arizona Complex League on July 16 and to OKC on July 22. Because he falls under a special category (rehabbing from TJ surgery), he has additional time if needed.
“With approval of the MLB Commissioner, a player who has undergone elbow UCL reconstruction surgery (so-called “Tommy John surgery”) may have his Minor League Rehabilitation Assignment renewed for up to 30 additional days (in the form of three ten-day renewals).”
It has been reported that May needs one more rehab start, but no more than two before being activated. I believe that May is scheduled to start on Tuesday, August 9. Depending on how he pitches that game, a decision will be made whether he needs another rehab start or to bring him up to Milwaukee for a start against the Brewers (August 16?).
I am assuming that AF/BG know which players will be healthy enough to be added to the 40-man, and how to do that without losing a future prospect. I am sure there are ways of getting around this crunch that none of us mere fans are aware of.