Dodgers Rumors: Teoscar Hernández Signing Contract

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After addressing their biggest needs with Tyler Glasnow and Yoshinobu Yamamoto, along with signing Shohei Ohtani, the Los Angeles Dodgers continued to search for additions to their roster.

Corner outfield remained a priority for the team with Mookie Betts set to play second base on a nearly everyday basis. The team was connected to numerous outfielders, including Max Kepler and Joc Pederson, but Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said the focus was on adding a right-handed bat.

They were connected to Teoscar Hernández since the start of the offseason, and those rumors grew louder in the last few days. According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, the Dodgers have now agreed to sign Hernández to a one-year deal:

BREAKING: Outfielder Teoscar Hernández and the Los Angeles Dodgers are in agreement on a one-year, $23.5 million contract, sources tell ESPN. Hernández joins Shohei Ohtani, Yoshinobu Yamamoto and Tyler Glasnow on the new-look Dodgers, who add another All-Star bat to the lineup.

— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 8, 2024

Hernandez was projected to receive a multi-year deal, but instead settled to sign a one-year deal with the Dodgers in the hopes of regaining some of his value and re-entering free agency next offseason. The deal also includes deferred money, according to Passan:

Of the $23.5 million in Teoscar Hernández’s deal with the Dodgers, $8.5 million will be deferred, to be paid out from 2030 to 2039, sources tell ESPN. The corner-outfield market is tough, and Hernández opted for a big one-year deal with the best team over other multiyear offers.

— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 8, 2024

Hernández is coming off a down season with the Seattle Mariners, but he still managed to hit .258/.305/.435 with 29 doubles, 26 home runs, 93 RBI, 106 OPS+, .317 wOBA and 105 wRC+ over 160 games. Against left-handed pitching, he hit a stellar .287/.307/.511 with 11 doubles, seven home runs and 27 RBI in 150 plate appearances.

From 2020-2022, Hernández had three consecutive seasons of at least an .807 on-base plus slugging percentage and 130 wRC+. That stretch included a Silver Slugger Award in back-to-back years and selection to the 2021 MLB All-Star Game.

He projects to fill in as the Dodgers everyday left fielder, setting up a platoon with Jason Heyward and Manuel Margot in right field, with James Outman manning center field.

What’s left for the Dodgers after Teoscar Hernández?

The Dodgers are said to remain interested in adding another starting pitcher to their rotation, which would provide them some additional depth with a lot of guys who project to be somewhat limited in terms of innings pitched.

They have also been connected to some of the top available relievers, including Josh Hader and Robert Stephenson.

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