The Los Angeles Dodgers were expected to advance deep into the postseason because of the amount of talent they have on their roster. Over the past couple of seasons, the trend has been toward an NLCS appearance at the very least, but they were eliminated in the NLDS by the San Diego Padres. As that came as a massive shock, their organization is focused on retooling their lineup in this 2023 off-season amid a scintillating MLB free agency period.

Clayton Kershaw is the first individual who is returning to Los Angeles, as he will likely retire as a Dodger already. However, the likes of Trea Turner, Andrew Heaney, and Justin Turner are all in the market for other teams to chase as well. With the Dodgers’ front office prioritizing bolstering their team, there are still some players to avoid who may hinder their progression. It does not necessarily mean they are washed or must be out of the league, but the fit may just be a bit off in Los Angeles.

Aroldis Chapman

One category where the Dodgers struggled mightily is their unreliable arms from the bullpen. In a couple of their losses to the Padres, it was their bullpen that could not hold the lead against the young San Diego squad. The Kenley Jansen departure was more magnified during the postseason, but searching for a contingency plan and adding an arm like Aroldis Chapman will not be a suitable answer.

The talent is unquestioned for Chapman due to his previous stints with the Cincinnati Reds, Chicago Cubs, and New York Yankees, but there have been a plethora of off-field issues that have been affecting his production. Furthermore, the inconsistency of his control has caused the Yankees to lose critical games as he cannot throw strikes with either his fastball or off-speed pitches.

Xander Bogaerts

Having arguably the best SS in the league in Trea Turner is a privilege their organization must not take for granted. Even with their unexpected struggles, it was Turner who was still consistent with his numbers offensively and defensively. If Turner leaves and L.A. gets Xander Bogaerts from the Boston Red Sox, that will be a significant downgrade on the ceiling of the Dodgers.

Bogaerts is still a star in the MLB, but the huge question mark is the salary he and his agent have been demanding from possible suitors. Furthermore, Bogaerts is also known for his struggles as a fielder, so it will a tough dilemma if the Dodgers will keep him at the shortstop position. The Dodgers are one of the wealthiest franchises in the MLB, and they should not make the mistake of losing Turner and panicking to give a long-term deal to someone like Xander Bogaerts.

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Mike Clevinger

When he was still donning the Cleveland Guardians uniform, Mike Clevinger was a lethal option in their rotation. It was terrific news that he was heading into the San Diego Padres, but he has not played like an ace so far. It has not been confirmed yet if Clevinger will be heading back to San Diego, but there is a realistic possibility for pressure to creep into him to join a big market like Los Angeles.

The talent will never be missing for a pitcher like Clevinger, but he needs more repetitions before he gains the confidence to pitch in front of an LA or New York crowd. An abysmal 4.33 ERA and seven total victories in 23 games pitched in 2022 is a cause for concern for the young righty.