The Dodgers have run into some serious bad luck on the injury front this year. Justin Turner has missed the entire season so far. Just as Turner is nearing a return to join Seager in the infield, Seager goes down. Even with their entire left side of the infield out at the moment, the Dodgers still have some internal options.
The most likely stopgap will be Chris Taylor, who played center fielder all year last year but has a background as a shortstop. If the Dodgers think Taylor (who hit .288 with 21 home runs and 17 steals last year) can play shortstop regularly, than they likely won’t explore a trade.
Obviously that would open up a hole in the outfield, but the Dodgers have Joc Pederson, Kike Hernandez, Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp and superstar prospect Alex Verdugo all in the fold. It’s likely they can piece together a very capable outfield from that group, and they’ll still have a strong shortstop in Taylor. (If the Dodgers wanted to add an outfielder and keep Taylor at SS, they could also look at Leonys Martin. But that’s another post.)
Breyvic Valera is LA’s other option. The 26-year-old came over from the Cardinals last year. He only has 13 career plate appearances however, and isn’t ready to be a starting infielder on a team that wants to reach the World Series. He slots in fine as a utility infielder, nothing more.
If the Dodgers decide they don’t want to shift Taylor to SS, they would almost certainly turn to the trade market. Manny Machado is an option, but the Dodgers are trying to stay under the luxury cap this season. They have $15 million to spare, but Machado’s contract would cost them $16 million. Plus, the amount of prospect capital the Dodgers would have to fork over for Machado would be outrageous. And if Seager is back and healthy in 2019, which he should be, then getting Machado would only be a one-year deal. That doesn’t seem worth it for the amount of prospects they’d surely have to give up.
The Rangers could make veteran SS Elvis Andrus available this summer. He’s currently on the disabled list, but expected back in a few weeks. He’d cost much less in prospect capital, although he’s signed through 2023 at about $15 million per year. So the Dodgers would either have to trade him when Seager gets back, or someone would need to switch positions. Neither is an ideal option.
That leaves Iglesias.