COMMENTARY | There are truly only a few untradeable players in baseball.
The Los Angeles Dodgers don't have any untradeable players on their roster. Yes, it would be extremely unwise -- borderline blasphemous -- to trade guys like Clayton Kershaw, Yasiel Puig or Hanley Ramirez, but it wouldn't be completely unheard of if they were traded (unlike the three players mentioned above).
But the Dodgers have about as close to untradeable a player as one could get in the minors. His name is Corey Seager.
Bet you thought I was going to say Julio Urias, huh? I wrote about the phenom in June, but I'd easily deal him before Seager in any trade scenario.
Seager, 19, played most of the 2013 season in the Midwest League with the Great Lakes Loons (Low-A), and performed quite well: .309/.389/.529 with 12 home runs, 18 doubles and 34 walks in 74 games. He struggled after a promotion to the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes of the California League (High-A), but he was the league's youngest player after said promotion.
He's a shortstop right now, but the consensus outside the Dodgers' organization is he'll eventually have to move to third base. If he were to somehow become a full-time shortstop in the majors, he'd be the largest player in the history of the game to do so.
If Seager makes it as a shortstop, that just makes him even more untradeable.
The Dodgers have a black hole at third base, and have ever since the days of Ron Cey. Pedro Guerrero played there for a few years (by default), Adrian Beltre had a couple good seasons and one great season before leaving for free agency after the 2004 season, and this year's resurgent Juan Uribe (who is now a free agent).
Dodger third basemen since 2005
Not included is Ramirez, who played all of eight games at third base for the Dodgers and is now their shortstop.
That's quite the unimpressive list, and I trimmed some of the guys who barely played. Beltre, Blake, Garciaparra and Uribe have been solid, but the rest of the guys are replacement-level or worse. With Seager's future lying at third base, the Dodgers cannot afford to trade him in any realistic trade scenario.
Yes, Tampa Bay Rays left-hander David Price is a great pitcher. He's one of the best in the game. The Dodgers don't particularly need Price, hence my reluctance to include Seager in any kind of Price scenario.
Barring anything completely unforeseen, Seager will be a quality major leaguer. His brother Kyle (Seattle Mariners) is already a budding star at third base, and Corey should be even better than him.
If third base wasn't such a tough position to fill for the Dodgers, Seager could be expendable. If they had someone else in the organization who was close to Seager in terms of talent and proximity to the majors, he could be expendable. Alas, they don't have either.
Seager should be ready for full-time big league action by opening day 2016. He could get his first taste of the majors in late-2015. Until then, he'll begin the 2014 season with Rancho Cucamonga before a certain promotion to Double-A by the middle of the season.
Seager is one of the best hitting prospects the Dodgers have ever drafted. He plays a position that isn't particularly easy to fill and has a potentially plus glove and bat. That's why the Dodgers can't trade him.
Dustin Nosler has followed the Dodgers from Northern California all his life. He's the founder of Feelin' Kinda Blue, a Los Angeles Dodgers' blog. He also co-hosts "Dugout Blues," a weekly Dodger podcast and writes about the St. Louis Rams on the Yahoo Contributor Network. Find him on Twitter @FeelinKindaBlue.
- Sports & Recreation
- Corey Seager
- Los Angeles Dodgers
- Hanley Ramirez