When Justin Morneau was first talked about as a trade possibility, the Dodgers were immediately connected. The Dodgers are in contention, but they've gotten a .661 OPS out of first base, which isn't nearly good enough. Could the Dodgers, with their deep pockets and their positional need, figure out a way to land Morneau from Minnesota?
Well maybe not:
#Dodgers no longer a fit for Morneau. They sent their only suitable young starter, Nate Eovaldi, to #Marlins in Hanley Ramirez trade.
The Twins supposedly want starting pitching in return for Morneau. Eovaldi was the Dodgers' most available young starting pitcher, and he's gone. Here's the weird thing: Morneau is due $14 million in 2013. He owns a .780 OPS with a 2012 FanGraphs WAR of 0.6. How demanding can the Twins really be? Shouldn't it be a high priority to just shed Morneau's salary, given his modest production?
If the Twins are going to stick to their starting-pitcher demand, then perhaps the Dodgers aren't a fit anymore. But perhaps the Twins' demands could change, perhaps the Dodgers could build a package around a different starting pitcher, or perhaps the Dodgers could work out a three-way trade. It's amazing the amount of things that are possible, as very few things are impossible.
Twins first baseman Justin Morneau has had a long road back from a concussion suffered two years ago; although still not 100 percent, he’s hitting well enough (.260/.322/.457) to draw interest from multiple interested in acquiring him, according to Jon Heyman:
At least the Dodgers, Blue Jays and Giants appear to have some interest in Twins first baseman Justin Morneau, who is making a nice comeback this year.
The Dodgers are looking at a multitude of offensive options, perhaps as many as 10. Toronto always has liked the native Canadian. And the Giants have issues at first base, though interestingly they seem more focused on their outfield at the moment.
All three teams have first-base issues, and the Jays could also use him at DH. Here’s one possible sticking point:
Morneau has about $19 million left on his contract through next year.
The Dodgers, with their deep-pocketed new ownership, could probably absorb that. Stay tuned; we are now just over 24 hours away from the trade deadline, Tuesday at 4 p.m. Eastern.