Dodgers Listed As Trade Landing Spot for Surging 2-Time Gold Glove Outfielder

Tyler O'Neill

Getty The Los Angeles Dodgers might be a trade destination for Boston Red Sox slugger Tyler O'Neill if they seek an upgrade in the outfield

The Los Angeles Dodgers are making good on their blockbuster offseason to open 2024, tied for the MLB lead with 12 wins and sitting in first place in the competitive National League West Division.

But there’s reason to believe the team will continue to acquire the most coveted players in baseball all the way up to the trade deadline and with that possibility in mind, Tim Kelly of Bleacher Report listed the Dodgers as an “ideal landing spot” for surging Boston Red Sox outfielder Tyler O’Neill, who holds the best OPS in baseball so far.

“While the Red Sox could hold on to O’Neill — hoping to either sign him to a long-term deal or extend a qualifying offer to him next winter — his injury history might make Boston a little more inclined to strike while the iron is hot, especially if it isn’t contending,” Kelly wrote. “If the Dodgers don’t feel comfortable that some combination of Jason Heyward, Chris Taylor, Kiké Hernández and Andy Pages can fill the final spot alongside Teoscar Hernández and James Outman, O’Neill could be a fit for a team that’s World Series or bust.”

Tyler O’Neill Has Emerged As an MVP Candidate in 2024 and Could Interest the Los Angeles Dodgers

With a batting order led by three former MVPs in Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman and Shohei Ohtani, the Dodgers hardly need another slugger in the lineup, but that is just what they’d get with the 2024 edition of O’Neill. 

The 28-year-old is slashing .459/.750/1.209 with seven home runs and eight RBI in 48 at bats so far this season, marks that make him the AL leader in OBP and the MLB leader in SLG and OPS and tied for the most homers in the big leagues alongside Marcell Ozuna and Mike Trout.

He won Gold Glove Awards in 2020 and 2021, though his current batting figures are far and away the best of his career, as he holds a career slash line of .250/.324/.467.

“He could shift to right field if that’s what a team needed from him and even has some experience in center field,” Kelly added. “When you pair that with 30-plus home run power, O’Neill figures to be one of the most coveted players available this summer, assuming health.”

Tyler O’Neill Is a Likely Trade Candidate for the Boston Red Sox

As Kelly noted, O’Neill has an injury history that threatens to derail his MVP-caliber season, as he’s played in fewer than 100 games in every season of his career except 2021. That could be a reason the Red Sox decide to put him on the trade block before this year’s deadline. 

Another would be the fact that he’s on a one-year, $5.85 million contract before reaching free agency, making him the kind of surging bat that appeals to World Series contenders as a midseason boost.

ESPN’s David Schoenfield sees it that way too, listing O’Neill as one of the most likely Red Sox trade candidates this season.

“O’Neill is also heading into free agency and is off to a blazing start,” Schoenfield wrote. “Let’s see if he can stay healthy and keep hitting, but if he does, the lack of middle-of-the-order bats available could make him one of the most sought-after position players at the deadline.”

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