In the most extreme case of the rich getting richer, the Los Angeles Dodgers finalized a stunning trade on Thursday night – the Trade Deadline is 4 ET today – by acquiring three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer and All-Star shortstop Trae Turner from the Washington Nationals for prospects. The Dodgers already were favored to repeat as World Series champions, but their MLB futures odds got that much shorter at William Hill Sportsbook. The SportsLine Projection Model, meanwhile, only gave L.A. a small bump overall simply as the team already was so loaded.
Before this year, no team in the history of Major League Baseball ever had three Cy Young Award winners and three MVPs appear for it in a season. The Dodgers have accomplished that with Clayton Kershaw, Trevor Bauer and David Price on the mound and now add a fourth Cy Young winner in Scherzer. Those guys have totaled eight Cy Youngs. They have four former MVPs as well in Kershaw, Mookie Betts (won in AL), Cody Bellinger and Albert Pujols (didn't start the year with the Dodgers).
That Bauer may never pitch for the team again due to legal troubles surely spurred the deal for Scherzer, who is likely to make his debut next Tuesday in a potential World Series preview vs. Houston. Turner is on the COVID injured list must be quarantined and test negative several times before being permitted to play again. He likely won't be back on the field until next week.
Once Turner is back, the entire infield would be 2021 All-Stars: Turner at shortstop, third baseman Justin Turner, Chris Taylor at second base and Max Muncy at first. Oh, and we didn't even mention shortstop and former NL MVP and Rookie of the Year Corey Seager, who is on the injured list but should return soon. Seager will play short when healthy, moving Turner to second and Taylor to the outfield/mega-utility role.
What's even more frightening is that the best pitcher on the Dodgers right now isn't Scherzer or Kershaw, who is on the injured list, but Walker Buehler (11-1, 2.19 ERA). He's a +700 second-favorite to Jacob deGrom (-700) to win this year's Cy Young. The longer deGrom remains out injured, the better Buehler's chances get.
At William Hill Sportsbook following this trade, the Dodgers dropped from +450 to +340 to win the World Series, +200 to +175 for the pennant and -170 to -180 to win the NL West – which the Giants lead by three games. San Francisco is +220 and almost sure to make a trade today. Ditto the Padres, who are +575 for the division and reportedly had a deal for Scherzer in principle, only for the Dodgers to one-up them with a better offer. I promise that San Diego will make a move today as well.
The SportsLine Projection Model bumps the Dodgers from 99.1 wins to 99.8 with this trade and 49.4 percent to win the West to 59.0 percent. L.A. repeating as World Series champs improved from 21.8 percent to 23.3 percent.
|w/Turner & Scherzer||99.1||61.20%||49.40%||99.60%||34.70%||21.80%|
|w/o Turner & Scherzer||99.8||61.60%||59.00%||99.70%||36.70%||23.30%|
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