Blue Jays: With latest injury news, could Jays and Dodgers pull off a trade?
With the news that Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Gavin Lux went down with a torn ACL on Monday, teams around the league will be picking up the phone to see if the reigning NL West champs need a new infielder.
While we don't know if Toronto Blue Jays' GM Ross Atkins put in a call to the Dodgers, if he felt so inclined, he could offer a legitimate replacement for Lux.
Now that veteran Whit Merrifield is part of the infield conversation, along with Cavan Biggio and Santiago Espinal, the Jays have plenty of depth for what amounts to a single position at second base. While we don't know for sure, Merrifield is projected by FanGraphs' Roster Resource to be the primary second baseman, at least to start the season.
That leaves 2022 All-Star Espinal as the prime candidate for a possible deal with Los Angeles. He has shown his versatility and ability to move around the infield, playing second, third and short over the past three seasons.
If the Dodgers decide that their in-house options, including Miguel Rojas, aren't going to cut it for the full season, they may be inclined to deal for a player like Espinal.
The Jays might be able to get a young arm in return to help solidify their pitching depth. Los Angeles has a plethora of pitchers in Triple-A, and despite needing to add to the rotation this winter they went out and got veteran Noah Syndergaard instead of promoting a rookie like Ryan Pepiot.
MLB Pipeline ranks Pepiot as the Dodgers' sixth overall and second pitching prospect. The 25-year-old made his major league debut last season and would be a great addition to the Jays' Triple-A pitching depth.
Over 36.1 innings in 2022, he registered a 3.47 ERA and 1.46 WHIP but maintained a strong 10.40 K/9. While he needs to improve his command, as he struggled with control in his nine appearances last season, the righty looked good in his spring debut this year, throwing 17 of his 21 pitches for strikes.