Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers went into the offseason with a need at shortstop as Trea Turner reached free agency for the first time in his career. He was the co-headliner of a star-studded class that also included Carlos Correa, Dansby Swanson and Xander Bogaerts.
Turner was the first elite shortstop to come off the board when he signed an 11-year, $300 million contract with the Philadelphia Phillies during the Winter Meetings. Bogaerts also inked an 11-yea deal, receiving $280 million from the San Diego Padres.
Although he didn’t sign during the Winter Meetings, Correa ultimately secured the most lucrative contract — 13 years for $350 million — from the San Francisco Giants one week later. Though, that came undone due to questions about Correa’s physical and now an agreement with the New York Mets is hanging in the balance.
That nonetheless left Swanson as the only elite free-agent shortstop on the market, but he has since signed a seven-year, $177 million contract with the Chicago Cubs.
The Dodgers reportedly had interest in adding Swanson, but the front office was split in opinion, per Juan Toribio of MLB.com:
At the start of the offseason, the Dodgers’ decision-makers were split on Swanson. Some were high on the shortstop; others believe Swanson is a very good player but not one who should get the years and dollars he’ll likely get in the open market.
In addition to the Dodgers’ reluctance to give Swanson a hefty contract, the Cubs were considered the biggest threat to sign him due to his wife, Mallory, being a professional soccer player for the Chicago Red Stars.
Swanson is coming off a season in which he set career highs in RBI (96), stolen bases (18) and games played (162). Although he is viewed by many as being a tier below the other top shortstops that had been available, Swanson has the advantage in terms of durability and defense.
After missing out on Swanson, Gavin Lux is the strong favorite to be the starting shortstop for the Dodgers next season, barring an unforeseen trade.
Freddie Freeman pushed for Dodgers to sign Dansby Swanson
Prior to signing with the Cubs, Freddie Freeman reportedly advocated for the Dodgers to sign Swanson.
The two were teammates with the Atlanta Braves for six seasons and won a World Series championship together in 2021. Freeman recently attended Swanson’s wedding and shares a close friendship with him.
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