Los Angeles Dodgers’ President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman recently made a Julio Urias admission that will please fans. Urias is set to hit free agency after the 2023 season. Many people around the MLB world believe LA is preparing for a Shohei Ohtani run next offseason, however, Friedman’s comments make it seem as if the Dodgers will try to re-sign Urias as well, per the New York Post’s Jon Heyman.
“I think Julio loves being a Dodger, and I know we love having Julio as a Dodgers,” Friedman said.
The Dodgers lost players such as Trea Turner and Justin Turner in free agency. Although losing stars is never ideal, the Dodgers were able to save money from a payroll standpoint. Los Angeles will be prepared to pursue Ohtani next offseason. However, Julio Urias has emerged as one of the best pitchers in baseball and LA may view him as the ace of the future.
Urias’ presence in Los Angeles will be even more important amid Clayton Kershaw’s uncertainty. Kershaw dealt with retirement rumors this past offseason before re-signing with the Dodgers. There are no guarantees as to what his post-2023 future has in store. Walker’s Buehler’s return will give the team another front-end starter, but Julio Urias is a pitcher the Dodgers will at least attempt to bring back.
Can the Dodgers land Ohtani and Urias?
The perfect situation for the Dodgers would be to end up with both Urias and Ohtani. Acquiring Ohtani ahead of the trade deadline would give Los Angeles an advantage in contract talks, and a trade could ultimately lead to an extension. The Dodgers agreed to a long-term deal with Mookie Betts shortly after acquiring him from the Boston Red Sox in 2020. They may take a similar approach with Ohtani.
Acquiring Ohtani and extending him during the season would allow the Dodgers to focus on re-signing Julio Urias in free agency.