2023 Dodgers Trade Rumors: Lots on Nolan Arenado, possible OF upgrades, and a ton of rotation options (including Justin Verlander)

Photo: Stacie Wheeler

We’re now just a few days away from the 2023 MLB Trade Deadline on August 1 at 12 PM HT/3 PM PT/6 PM ET, and while it hasn’t been as rumor-heavy as I expected so far considering the needs of the Dodgers, things are now starting to pick up a bit. Even after the trades they’ve already made, the Dodgers are clearly still looking to make maybe a couple big moves.


Any trade deadline story with the Dodgers at the moment has to revolve around Nolan Arenado rumors. Things kicked off in earnest on that front when Jorge Castillo reported the Dodgers and Cardinals were having talks about the All-Star.

The Dodgers have engaged in talks with the St. Louis Cardinals to acquire the eight-time All-Star third baseman, according to people with knowledge of the situation but who are not authorized to speak publicly. The Cardinals could also send a starting pitcher — Jack Flaherty or Jordan Montgomery — to Los Angeles for a package of major leaguers and prospects.
The Cardinals would want young pitching in a deal; they have eyed Bobby Miller, Gavin Stone, Ryan Pepiot, and Emmet Sheehan in talks, according to people with knowledge of the situation. A trade would also likely include the Dodgers sending Max Muncy or Chris Taylor, if not both, to St. Louis.
Arenado has a full no-trade clause — meaning he could block a trade to any team — but he is willing to waive the clause to play for the Dodgers, and only the Dodgers, according to people with knowledge of the situation. The Southern California native is said to have always wanted to play for the Dodgers.

This is meaningful, and people took is seriously, because he’s not a reporter that would just make things up.

Despite some Cardinals writers melting down over this, the report was basically confirmed by Katie Woo, though she does emphasize that it’s just talks.

The Cardinals and Dodgers have indeed discussed a potential trade that would send Arenado to his home city of Los Angeles, as first reported by the Los Angeles Times. Why wouldn’t they? Obviously, Dodgers’ president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman would take an opportunity to land a franchise-altering talent — any front-office executive would. And why wouldn’t Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak at least investigate whether he could access some of the Dodgers’ highly regarded young pitching?
Mozeliak has a responsibility to do his due diligence on any offer, even the ones most unlikely to come to fruition. The Cardinals have little interest in parting with their cornerstone third baseman. Trading Arenado, who rallied so hard to be traded to St. Louis in the first place, would signal a major setback. The fan base, which is already teetering on the edge, would ignite in a full-fledged firestorm. But if Mozeliak wants to field a competitive team in 2024, these are the kinds of conversations that need to take place.

The names mentioned here as possibly of interest are Bobby Miller, Gavin Stone, Ryan Pepiot, Michael Grove, Emmet Sheehan, and Nick Frasso.

The report concludes by saying that the Cardinals probably won’t do it, and emphasizes that Arenado wants to be in St. Louis.

That said, it’s worth noting that his agent did say that he would not only waive his no-trade for the Dodgers, though coming out with that could also be about leverage.

Finally, at the very least things seem to be getting a bit weird, as if the trade is not a possibility then the Cardinals could just say so publicly. But they aren’t.

Anyway, I’ve been talked into Arenado as the future third baseman of the Dodgers going forward, and as such it’ll probably never happen. But mainly I do hope the package going back is a lot of pitching prospects that they don’t currently need to win (no Bobby Miller, especially), with the same applying to dealing away players like Max Muncy, who despite struggles would inarguably help the lineup this year.


There are other Cardinals the Dodgers are interested in as well, notably starting pitchers Jordan Montgomery and Jack Flaherty.

The Cards’ stance at the deadline: The St. Louis Cardinals will start sifting through offers this week. Jack Flaherty and Jordan Montgomery are as good as gone. Unless Snell is moved, Montgomery is going to be the best lefty starter on the market. Most contenders have some interest, including the Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros. St. Louis wants controllable pitching in return and could attach an outfielder in a package. From the position players side, Paul DeJong could make sense, since he has team options over the next two seasons. What happens with Jordan Hicks is still a question mark. — Rogers

Preferably Montgomery, as covered here, but Flaherty could work as well considering they traded for Lance Lynn recently.


Surprisingly, the Dodgers are still looking at outfield upgrades in the form of Tommy Pham and Mark Canha of the Mets, according to Pat Ragazzo. Fabian Ardaya also reported this rumor.

The Los Angeles Dodgers are showing trade interest in New York Mets outfielders Tommy Pham and Mark Canha, as sources told Inside the Mets.
Per sources, the Mets are seeking a lower minor league prospect outside of an organization’s top 10 in exchange for Canha. It is unknown as to what they’re seeking in return for Pham, but it could be similar.

That would be a reasonable price in this market, but the roster is full unless they cut guys they recently traded for.

One option would be dealing position players in an Arenado deal to free up a roster spot, while another would be dealing from their glut of lefty outfielders (like David Peralta) to open room. Interesting possibilities.


Meanwhile, the Dodgers continue to be thorough on the starting pitching front, as Jorge Castillo and Jack Harris note.

The Dodgers have explored Verlander as a trade option, according to multiple people with knowledge of the situation. The fourth-place Mets have also emerged as likely sellers, after dealing top reliever David Robertson to the Miami Marlins on Thursday.

Aside from Justin Verlander from the Mets, they are also in on the aforementioned Cardinals in Montgomery and Flaherty, as well as Pirates starter Mitch Keller, and Tigers starter Eduardo Rodriguez (highlighted here).

On the other side, interest in Max Scherzer, Marcus Stroman, and Dylan Cease is downplayed as unlikely. The report also mentions they were in on Lucas Giolito from the White Sox, but decided not to best the Angels offer, which quite frankly was the right move.

Verlander would be funny just because of the mental anguish it would cause his annoying brother Ben, and he is clearly the best of the options here. However, Montgomery, Keller, or Rodriguez would all be undeniable floor raisers for the Dodgers, and would likely make playoff starts at this rate.


Interesting times with the Dodgers having holes at the deadline and needing to be aggressive. Tick tock.

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