Two years after we thought the deal was inevitable, it’s finally come to fruition: the Twins have traded second baseman Brian Dozier to the Dodgers .
Brian Dozier has been traded to the #Dodgers. Deal is done. @Ken_Rosenthal reported close.— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) July 31, 2018
It’s not at all surprising the Twins moved Dozier, seeing as the team has been in fire-sale mode all weekend. Since Dozier is set to become a free agent after the season ends in any case, he was on of the team’s best trading chips.
Though Dozier is having a bit of a down year — he’s hitting only .224/.305/.402 with 16 home runs — his past production probably carries some weight. Since 2015, Dozier has the second highest fWAR of any second baseman in baseball, trailing on Jose Altuve (duh). He’s by far had the most home runs in that time, hitting 120, compared to Jonathan Schoop, who is in second place with 89. The fact Dozier generally starts off slow and heats up in the second half of the season might have been a selling factor for him as well.
What is mildly surprising about the trade is that it ended up being with the Dodgers. The Dodgers recently traded for Manny Machado, which already seemed to have beefed up their middle infield quite a bit.
In return for Brian Dozier, the Twins are getting the Dodgers’ used bits — second baseman Logan Forsythe. Forsythe, if you remember, was the guy the Dodgers went out and traded for when the Twins refused to accept Jose de Leon for Dozier in a one-for-one trade. At the time, many outlets praised the Dodgers for finding a “cheaper” version of Brian Dozier, but I guess it turned out he really wasn’t Dozier after all. Over 70 games played this season, Forsythe is hitting .207/.270/.290 with two home runs. He’ll be a free agent at the end of the season, but at least can help out in the middle infield for the rest of the year.
In addition to Forsythe, the Twins received minor leaguer Luke Raley. Raley, 23, is a first baseman and outfielder who has sent the 2018 season so far in Double-A, where he’s hit .275/.345/.477 with 17 home runs. Raley was ranked as the Dodgers’ 19th best prospect on MLB.com’s Prospect Pipeline.
The Twins also received Devin Smeltzer. Smeltzer, 22, is a starting pitcher who 4.73 ERA and 1.35 WHIP over 83.2 innings in Double-A this year. He’s also a cancer survivor, having been diagnosed with pelvic rhabdomyosarcoma at the age of 9.
Best of luck to you, Brian Dozier. Maybe we’ll meet again one day.