Dodgers Urged to Flip Young Pitchers in Blockbuster Dylan Cease Trade

Emmet Sheehan

Getty The Los Angeles Dodgers might consider leveraging some young pitching depth to add to an already aggressive offseason.

The Los Angeles Dodgers have done more than any other team to improve their chances at a World Series championship in 2024, adding Shohei Ohtani, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Tyler Glasnow and several other high-profile players to their roster.

But who is to say when enough is enough? Writing for FanSided, Zachary Rotman urged the Dodgers to kick their high-octane offseason into overdrive by trading away some of their younger pitchers to acquire Dylan Cease from the Chicago White Sox.

“Adding Dylan Cease on top of everything else Los Angeles had done this offseason would be completely unfair, yet it’s exactly what (president of baseball operations) Andrew Friedman should be trying to do,” Rotman wrote. “Bobby Miller presumably wouldn’t be available, but guys like Emmet Sheehan, Nick Frasso, Gavin Stone and Kyle Hurt are just some of many pitchers the Dodgers can dangle in trade offers.”

Trading for Dylan Cease Gives the Dodgers Valuable Rotation Depth

In addition to Yamamoto, Glasnow and Ohtani (who is expected to join the rotation in 2025 following a shoulder injury last season), the Dodgers also signed James Paxton and re-signed Clayton Kershaw, establishing the most fearsome rotation in MLB — if it can stay healthy. 

That question mark is a big one, though, and trading for Cease would net a valuable insurance policy.

“Cease would be a huge addition in large part because of the question marks surrounding every pitcher they have,” noted Rotman. “Injury concerns revolving around guys like Glasnow, Paxton, Kershaw and Walker Buehler are very real. Adding a durable arm like Cease who has made at least 32 starts in each of the last three seasons would provide a huge boost.”

And Cease is not just durable; he’s effective. In 2022, he was the AL Cy Young runner up after pitching for 227 strikeouts, 14 wins and a 2.20 ERA. Last season, his ERA ballooned to a mediocre 4.58, but his stuff remained elite, as demonstrated by the MLB-leading number of “swords” he induced.

If the Dodgers do find a way to gild their rotation lily, Cease might slot in as the number two starter for next season, behind Yamamoto but ahead of Glasnow and Miller. It might not really matter how exactly the team’s collection of aces is stacked.

The Los Angeles Dodgers Can Leverage Some Prospect Depth in a Trade for Dylan Cease

The Dodgers have retained a top farm system despite its aggressive offseason. It’s ranked number three in MLB, per The Athletic’s Keith Law and it’s notable for an enviable pitching pipeline.

Last season, Sheehan pitched for a 4.92 ERA in a 60-inning big-league debut; Stone pitched for a 9.00 ERA in his own 31-inning big-league debut; Frasso pitched for a 4.16 ERA in 93 innings across Double-A and Triple-A; and Hurt pitched for a 3.91 ERA across Double-A and Triple-A before logging three strikeouts and giving up no runs in a two-inning debut with the big-league team.

A package including three of these prospects might be just enough to wrest Cease from the White Sox. The Dodgers have offensive pieces they could throw in as well. In any case, the cost for Cease is likely to be high and it might keep going up until next season’s trade deadline.

“If something comes up that benefits both sides, and our front front office is excited about it, we’ll do it,” White Sox Manager Pedro Grifol said about Cease, per “If not, he’s our Opening Day starter.”

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