Dodgers’ World Series Odds Improve to +320 After Adding Scherzer and Turner

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  • The LA Dodgers’ odds to win the 2021 World Series improved to +320 after acquiring Max Scherzer, Trea Turner from Nationals
  • Astros, White Sox, Mets, and Padres have the next-best World Series odds
  • Padres had been close to deal for Scherzer before Dodgers swooped in

The Los Angeles Lakers weren’t the only LA-based team to make a big trade with a Washington-based team on Thursday. According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the Dodgers are closing in on a massive blockbuster of a trade that will land a pair of former All-Stars in Tinseltown.

Passan says the Dodgers are on the verge of adding starting pitcher Max Scherzer and shortstop Trea Turner in exchange for a massive haul of prospects. Scherzer, 37, made his final start for the Nationals on Thursday, while Turner is currently on the IL after testing positive for Covid earlier this week.

Scherzer had been heavily linked with a move to a west coast contender. Earlier Thursday, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported that the San Diego Padres were close to a deal for the former Cy Young winner. However, the Dodgers clearly upped the ante as the day progressed, and the deal is all but done. 

In exchange for both players, the Nationals are set to receive several highly-touted prospects. Pitchers Josiah Gray and Gerardo Carrillo are expected to head to Washington, as are catcher Keibert Ruiz and outfielder Donovan Casey. According to MLB.com, Ruiz and Gray are the Dodgers’ No. 1 and 2 prospects, respectively. Carrillo is No. 17.

The deal will become official once both teams approve of the medical records of the players involed. Scherzer has the right to block any deal as a result of his service time at the major league level, though there is no reason to believe he’ll veto a trade to the reigning World Series champions.

Stars Heading to Los Angeles

Scherzer is on the books for $35 million this year in the final year of a seven-year, $210 million pact he signed with the Nationals back in 2014. He will earn most of his money via deferrals between 2022 and 2028, which softens his annual cost overall. Turner will become a free agent after the 2022 campaign.

The addition of both players is expected to add about $17 million to the Dodgers’ payroll in prorated salary for the rest of the season. That runs LA’s total payroll up to $285 million, which puts them about $85 million ahead of the Yankees, who have the second-highest payroll in the majors.

Scherzer, who was tapped by his new manager, Dave Roberts, to start for the National League in the All-Star Game, is 8-4 with a 2.76 ERA on the year. Scherzer’s 34.3 percent strikeout rate is right in line with the numbers he has posted for the last several years. The eight-time All-Star won two NL Cy Young Awards during his time in Washington, and he led the Nats to the franchise’s first and only World Series title back in 2019. 

In LA, Scherzer will join a stacked rotation that already features another future Hall-of-Famer in Clayton Kershaw in addition to Walker Buehler, Julio Urias, and David Price. Trevor Bauer, last year’s NL Cy Young winner, is not expected to return to the team. Dustin May, meanwhile, is done for the year after tearing the UCL in his right elbow. 

Turner, 28, was named an All-Star for the first time this season. His inclusion in the deal is a bit of a surprise considering the Dodgers already have Justin Turner and Corey Seager entrenched on the left side of the infield. Seager has missed much of the season due to injury, however, and he will be a free agent after the season ends. Trea Turner will likely spend much of his time at second base and in the outfield in LA.
Turner has slashed .322/.369/.521 with 18 homers, 49 RBI, and 21 stolen bases for Washington in 96 games so far this season. 

Dodgers Now Even Heavier Favorites

In news that should surprise nobody, the move has further solidified the Dodgers’ status as prohibitive favorites to win the World Series for the second straight year. LA’s World Series odds improved to +320 at BetOnline after the news came down, which puts them considerably ahead of the field. The rival Houston Astros have the next best odds at a distant +625, followed by the Chicago White Sox (+750), New York Mets (+850), and San Diego Padres (+950). 

That said, the Dodgers have some work to do between now and the end of September. Los Angeles just dropped two of their three games in a midweek series to the San Francisco Giants, which increased the Dodgers’ deficit to three games in the NL West. The Dodgers added more pitching depth by acquiring lefty Danny Duffy from the Royals for a player to be named later, as well.

San Francisco, who owns MLB’s best record at 64-38, will begin a three-game series at home against Houston on Friday night. The Dodgers, meanwhile, will head to Arizona to play three games against the last-place Diamondbacks. 

Taylor Smith

Taylor Smith has been a staff writer with GamblingSites.org since early 2017. Taylor is primarily a sports writer, though he will occasionally dabble in other things like politics and entertainment betting. His primary specialties are writing about the NBA, Major League Baseball, NFL and domestic and international soccer. Fringe sports like golf and horse racing aren’t exactly his cup of tea, bu ...

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