The Los Angeles Dodgers have talked about shopping any of their big name players to other teams and with the MLB Winter Meetings on the horizon, Matt Kemp’s status is growing more uncertain by the day:
— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) December 7, 2013
This is bad news for Dodgers fans as Kemp’s potential value to the team is nearly unbounded. I have been fairly vocal in the past on my stance that the Dodgers should not trade Kemp and I still hold to that belief. To reiterate some of my thoughts from the past, I believe that Kemp’s recent struggles with injury have overshadowed how brilliant he has been in the past. As the rightful winner of the 2011 NL MVP Award, Kemp started his young career with a bang but was limited in playing time after that. Even still, the centerfielder’s performances have been strong during the periods when he was able to come back from his injuries. Don’t count on Kemp being the next Ken Griffey Jr. as his injuries will not continue to flare up.
With Kemp’s agent heading to Winter Meetings and saying that they feel a move could likely happen, it could very well just be him building hype to try to get his client some attention. All the same, it should make Dodgers fans nervous. If the Dodgers give up on Kemp and let him be someone else’s risk, they will likely pay in more ways than one. Most analysts believe a team that would take Kemp on would ask the Dodgers to chip in for some of his massive contract. If that happens and Kemp resurges like I expect he will, Ned Colletti and the Dodgers’ front office will look like fools for paying part of his salary to be an elite level player again for some other team.
The Boys in Blue need to do the right thing and hang on to this young man who is one of the best ball players in the game when healthy. Expect Kemp to get back on track in 2014, wherever he is playing, and hope that he is still in Los Angeles if you are a Dodgers fan.